Class and Statutory News

OIL TANKERS - CARRIAGE OF BIOFUEL BLENDS

Oct. 27 2015

From1 January 2016, ships carrying Biofuel blends shall have an Oil content meter (OCM) approved in compliance with MEPC.240(65)

Ships carrying biofuel blends containing 75 per cent or more of petroleum oil are subject to Annex I of MARPOL. When carrying such biofuel blends, Oil Discharge Monitoring Equipment shall be in compliance with regulation 31 of Annex I of MARPOL.

The MEPC, at its sixty-fifth session, adopted, by resolution MEPC.240(65), the 2013 Amendments to the Revised guidelines and specifications for oil discharge monitoring and control systems for oil tankers (resolution MEPC.108(49)), which contain, inter alia, the revised form of  the Type Approval Certificate (TAC) for oil content meters intended for monitoring  biofuel blends .

From 1st January 2016, ships which intend to carry Biofuel blends containing 75 per cent or more of petroleum oil,  shall have an oil content meter (OCM)  approved in compliance with resolution MEPC.108(49) as modified by resolution MEPC.240(65). 

It implies that  :
- The oil content meter (OCM) shall have a TAC, as modified by resolution MEPC.240(65).
- The oil discharge monitoring and control system (ODME) manual shall be revised and re-approved
- An occasional survey shall be carried out in order to verify onboard the compliance, upon owner's request

Attention is drawn to the guidance provided in the MEPC.1/circ.858 regarding the issuance of revised certificate of type approval for oil content meters intended for monitoring the discharge of oil-contaminated water from the cargo tank areas of oil tankers.
Guidance

1. When the oil content meter (OCM) has been approved in accordance with resolution MEPC.108(49) before 17 May 2013, the Form of Type Approval Certificate (TAC), as provided in resolution MEPC.108(49), may be used
      a. for OCMs installed on ships not carrying biofuel blends; or
      b. for OCMs installed on ships carrying biofuel blends, until 1 January 2016 (on the condition that the tank residues and washings are pumped ashore).

2. For all ships carrying biofuel blends on or after 1 January 2016, the OCM should have a TAC, as modified by resolution MEPC.240(65).

3. When the OCM has been tested and submitted for approval (or re-approval in the case of OCMs that have undergone modifications but were originally approved in accordance with resolution MEPC.108(49)) on or after 17 May 2013, regardless of whether the OCM is intended for monitoring biofuel blends, the Form of the TAC should be amended in accordance with resolution MEPC.240(65).

Owners / managers shall ensure that their vessels are in compliance with the above regulations in due course