Rules to steer high-tech decarbonization ambitions to safe shores

Rules to steer high-tech decarbonization ambitions to safe shores

Feb. 1 2023 - 3 min


With new International Maritime Organization (IMO) short-term measures newly in effect, the coming months will be crucial for shipowners in their decarbonization journey. As explored in our recent technology report on smart shipping , digitalization is an effective, immediate decarbonization enabler that owners can employ to monitor emissions, alongside onboard technology.  

Bureau Veritas has updated its Rules for the classification of steel ships (NR 467 ) to guide owners through this stage of the journey. Incorporating both mandatory IACS resolutions and partner feedback, the January 2023 update includes:

  • OCC: an additional service feature outlining requirements for the safe design and installation of onboard carbon capture and storage systems
  • CII-REALTIME : an additional class notation for computer-based systems that calculate and monitor the ship’s consumption data for the Carbon Intensity Index (CII)
  • SMART(): an additional class notation for evaluating ships’ digital infrastructure, completed with notations to qualify the type of smart function as detailed in our NR 675 Rules
  • CYBER RESILIENT: an additional class notation as a measure of early compliance with new IACS cybersecurity requirements

Updates with your needs in mind

So, what are these updates and what do they bring to ship owners? With the increased regulatory scrutiny that will come with SEEMP Part III and CII, owners will need to be reassured as to their carbon emissions as well as the reliability of their reported data. OCC and CII-REALTIME were created in anticipation of these needs. 2023 will be a pivotal year as CII calculation results are to be expected in early 2024 for 2023’s emissions. The assurance provided by these updates will guide owners in making the right choices for their vessels and fleets in this transitional period.

Keeping pace with decarbonization, by our clients’ side

As well as helping owners’ decision making, we understand that a host of different stakeholders are involved in the design, building, operations and repairs of ships. They are the ultimate end-users of our Rules. As their partner – by their side and guiding them through regulatory and operational changes – we must ensure the guidance we provide is timely, practical and adaptable.

Creating Rules that truly serve an industry means reaching out to actively collaborate with them. We do this at two levels. Firstly, our experts participate in collaborative projects where new or existing innovative solutions are evaluated for marine use to gain experience. In the past year we have been involved in more than 100 Joint Development Projects (JDPs) and delivered 70 Approvals in Principle (AiPs). Secondly, we actively participate in IACS working groups for developing minimum unified requirements before incorporating them into ours.

As a result,” says Laurent Courregelongue, Development Director for Classification Rules and Software, “we are always aiming to be one step ahead in laying the groundwork for our future Rules. We are constantly listening and learning once they are in use. Our maintenance process ensures that identified needs for improvement are taken on board.

The race to net zero emissions: both a marathon and a sprint

We are at the dawn of a major transformation in ship energy systems accompanied by a boom in digital innovations,Laurent adds. “However, there are no internationally accepted safety standards for many of them. Therefore, it’s crucial that classification societies are alert and agile in developing Rules. It’s how we can help ensure the safe implementation of innovative technology now and support the decarbonization of the shipping industry in the long-term.