Tag Archives: ballast water

The Ballast Water Management Convention is almost here

aquariamcircleeditedBWC- a quick guide to implemtation

Controlling the spread of invasive species

Implementation Date 8 September 2017

Another quick pause from the stream of certification posts to have a peer into some of the key facts about implementing the ballast water convention.

When must a ship comply with the standards defined in the Ballast water Convention?

Resolution A.1088(28) Application of the International Convention for the control and management of ship’s ballast water and sediments 2004

“4 notwithstanding paragraph 2.2, where the Convention enters into force after the year 2016, a ship subject to regulations B-3.1.2 or B-3.4 will not be required to comply with regulation D-2 until its first renewal survey following the date of entry into force of the Convention; .

5 a ship referred to in paragraphs 2.1 to 2.4 will be required to comply with either regulation D-1 or regulation D-2 until such time as regulation D-2 is enforced;

.6 the renewal survey referred to in paragraphs 2.1 to 2.4 is the renewal survey associated with the International Oil Pollution Prevention Certificate under MARPOL Annex I;

In simple terms as from 8 September 2017 a ship must comply with D-1 (ballast water exchange) or D-2 ( Ballast water standards), and after that date, on renewal of its IOPP certificate, it must comply with D-2.



What is required to comply with the Ballast Water Management Convention?


Regulation B-1 Ballast Water Management Plan

Each ship shall have on board and implement an approved Ballast Water Management plan.

Regulation B-2 Ballast Water Record Book

Each ship shall have on board a Ballast Water record book that may be an electronic record system, or that may be integrated into another record book or system.

“Each operation concerning Ballast Water shall be fully recorded without delay in the Ballast Water record book. Each entry shall be signed by the officer in charge of the operation concerned and each completed page shall be signed by the master”

Regulation B-3 Ballast Water Management for Ships

Ships are to manage ballast in accordance with either D-1 or D-2.

Regulation B-5 Sediment Management for Ships

All ships shall remove and dispose of Sediments from spaces designated to carry Ballast Water in accordance with the provisions of the ship‘s Ballast Water Management plan

Regulation B-6 Duties of Officers and Crew

Officers and crew shall be familiar with their duties in the implementation of Ballast Water Management and be familiar with the ship‘s Ballast Water Management plan.

More information about the Ballast Water Management Convention

Useful BWC links

Information about BWC certification

The Ballast Water Management Convention on Navsregs store


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International Ballast Water Management Certificate- A handy guide

Controlling the spread of invasive species

Enters into force on 8 September 2017


“The spread of invasive species is now recognized as one of the greatest threats to the ecological and the economic well being of the planet.” IMO website

Bringing up the rear of this section on ship certification posts is the newest of the the documents. It has been a long time in development and ratification, but at last is now entering force in September of 2017.

Why is an International Ballast Water Management Certificate required?

It will be required under the International Convention for the Control and Management of Ships‘ Ballast Water and Sediments.

Two suggested links:

Two definitions from the Convention:

Ballast Water “ means water with its suspended matter taken on board a ship to control trim, list, draught, stability or stresses of the ship.

Harmful Aquatic Organisms and Pathogens “ means aquatic organisms or pathogens which,  if introduced into the sea including estuaries, or into fresh water courses, may create hazards to the environment, human health, property or resources, impair biological diversity or interfere with other legitimate uses of such areas.

Which ships require the certificate

Ships of 400 gross tonnage and above.

What information is contained on an International Ballast Water Management Certificate?

  • Particulars of ship
    • Name of ship
    • Distinctive number or letters
    • Port of registry
    • Gross Tonnage
    • IMO number
    • Date of Construction
  • Ballast information
    • Ballast Water Capacity (in cubic metres)
    • Details of Ballast Water Management Method(s) Used
    • Method of Ballast Water Management used
    • Date installed (if applicable)
    • Name of manufacturer (if applicable)
    • The principal Ballast Water Management method(s) employed on this ship is/are:
      • In accordance with regulation D-1
      • In accordance with regulation D-2
      • The ship is subject to regulation D-4
  • Validity
  • Certificate is validity
  • Survey dates
  • Issued

What Surveys are required?

Reference Regulation E-1 Surveys

Ships of 400 gross tonnage and above to which this Convention applies, excluding floating platforms, FSUs and FPSOs:

An initial survey before the ship is put in service or before the Certificate is issued for the first time.

An intermediate survey within three months before or after the second Anniversary date or within three months before or after the third Anniversary date of the Certificate

An annual survey within three months before or after each Anniversary date

An additional survey either general or partial,after a change, replacement, or significant repair of the structure, equipment, systems, fittings, arrangements and material necessary to achieve full compliance with this Convention

What inspections may be carried out?

  • In a port or offshore terminal of another inspections to determine whether the ship is in compliance with this Convention. This inspection will normally be limited to:
  • Verifying that there is onboard a valid Certificate
  • Inspection of the Ballast Water record book
  • A sampling of the ship‘s Ballast Water. However, the time required to analyse the samples shall not be used as a basis for unduly delaying the operation, movement or departure of the ship.

What ballast water standards must be met?

After 8th September ships must comply with one of the following. D1 can only be used up to the renewal of the IOPP certificate. See IMO  Resolution  A1.088(28) for more information.

Regulation D-1 Ballast Water Exchange Standard
This requires Ballast Water exchange  with an efficiency of at least 95 percent volumetric exchange of Ballast Water. For ships exchanging Ballast Water by the pumping-through method, pumping through three times the volume of each Ballast Water tank shall be considered to meet the standard

Regulation D-2 Ballast Water Performance Standard

This sets standards according to the number of  viable organisms per cubic metre.  The standard also states what microbes must be included in the test as indicators.


Regulation D-4 fives a five year exemption to Prototype Ballast Water Treatment Technologies.

What documents must be carried with the certificate?


Each ship shall have on board and implement a Ballast Water Management plan. Such a plan shall be approved by the Administration

Each ship shall have on board a Ballast Water record book that may be an electronic record system, or that may be integrated into another record book or system.


Some useful Ballast water links

Click here for information on the Really Handy Books revision aids for mariners>



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