IMO #21 - MARPOL-ECA公约 2013.02.16

2013-02-17 12:39  浏览次数 189



IMO MARPOL-ECA 际公约海上环保排废控制区迄今巳在北欧, 波罗的海和北美三个地区开始执行

这个公约将会延伸到全世界, 它对航运会带来极大的改革和负担.


North American emission control area comes into effect on 1 August 2012

The North American Emission Control Area (ECA), under the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL), comes into effect from 1 August 2012, bringing in stricter controls on emissions of sulphur oxide (SOx), nitrogen oxide (NOx) and particulate matter for ships trading off the coasts of Canada, the United States and the French overseas collectivity of Saint-Pierre and Miquelon.

Amendments to MARPOL Annex VI (Regulations for the prevention of air pollution from ships) to establish the North American ECA entered into force on 1 August 2011, with a 12-month period before becoming effective.

There are now three designated ECAs in effect globally, the other two being sulphur oxide ECAs only in the Baltic Sea area and the North Sea area.

A fourth area, the United States Caribbean Sea ECA, covering certain waters adjacent to the coasts of Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands, was designated under MARPOL amendments adopted in July 2011, with expected entry into force on 1 January 2013, with the new ECA taking effect 12 months later on 1 January 2014.

Coordinates for the North American ECA
Coordinates for the North American ECA can be found in Resolution MEPC.190(60)

ECA emissions limits
Within ECAS, the sulphur content of fuel oil (expressed in terms of % m/m – that is, by weight) must be no more than 1.00% m/m; falling to 0.10% m/m on and after 1 January 2015.

This compares to 3.50% m/m outside an ECA, falling to 0.50% m/m on and after 1 January 2020. This date could be deferred to 1 January 2025, depending on the outcome of a review, to be completed by 2018, as to the availability of compliant fuel oil.

In practice, this means that, within an ECA, ships must burn fuel oil of a lower sulphur content. Alternatively, the ship may use any “fitting, material, appliance or apparatus or other procedures, alternative fuel oils, or compliance methods”, which are at least as effective in terms of emissions reductions, as approved by the Party to MARPOL Annex VI.

With regard to NOx emissions, marine diesel engines installed on a ship constructed on or after 1 January 2011 must comply with the “Tier II” standard set out in regulation 13 of MARPOL Annex VI. Marine diesel engines installed on a ship constructed on or after 1 January 2016 will be required to comply with the more stringent Tier III NOx standard, when operated in a designated NOx ECA.

In Resolution MEPC.190(60), the IMO Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) adopted amendments to MARPOL Annex VI that designate a North American Emission Control Area (ECA). This is intended to ensure more stringent control of emissions of sulphur oxides (SOx), nitrogen oxides (NOx) and particulate matter (PM) than the limits that apply globally.

Top of Form

Compliance with the emissions regulations is mandatory as from 1 August 2012.

The new appendix VII to MARPOL Annex VI contains the definition and boundaries (with full coordinates) of the North American Emission Control Area (ECA), which is based on the North American Datum of 1983/World Geodetic System 1984 (NAD83/WGS84) (reference to MEPC.1/Circ.723). The US Caribbean ECA does not come into force until 2014.

Fuel sulphur limit
When vessels are operating within the North American ECA established for SOx and particulate matter control, the sulphur content of fuel oil used on board must not exceed the following limits:

1.00% on or after 1 August 2012;

0.10% on or after 1 January 2015; or

an equivalent method as approved (MARPOL Annex VI, Regulation 4).

Fuel change-over procedure
Vessels continuously operating on low sulphur fuel oil and those that in the future will be equipped with exhaust cleaning systems are not subject to changeover requirements.

All ships using separate fuel oils when operating within an ECA are to carry a written fuel oil change-over procedure, developed specifically for that vessel, containing:

A step-by-step procedure for carrying out the fuel oil change-over;

The date, time and position of the vessel; and

Methods for calculating the time necessary to ensure the fuel oil service system is fully flushed of all fuel oils exceeding the applicable sulphur content limit prior to entering the ECA.

Ships provided with redundant service and settling tanks may experience a minor challenge as the change-over time is related to the dilution of existing high sulphur fuel oil (HSFO) in the fuel oil service system.

DNV Petroleum Services considers the engine room log book to be the most suitable place in which to record the change-over.

For further information about fuel oil transfer, please contact DNV Petroleum Services at

Exhaust gas cleaning systems
An exhaust gas scrubber can be installed to remove sulphur from the engine exhaust gas as an equivalent to a fuel sulphur limit.

The Ratio Emission allowed in the North American ECA from 1 August 2012 is 43.3 SO2 (ppm)/CO2.

For further information about exhaust gas cleaning systems (EGCS), please contact DNV Advisory Services or read more here.

Impact of North American Emission Control Area (ECA) on the U.S and the Shipping Industry

October 19, 2012 By Chief Officer Abhishek Bhanawat Leave a Comment

From 1st August 2012 onwards the third Emission Control Area came into force. The North American Emission Control Area is applicable for ships trading in areas off the Coasts of Canada, The United States and French majorities of Saint – Pierre and Miquelon, including areas around Hawaii Islands.

Under the International Convention for Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL – Annex VI), with effect from 1st August 2012, all ships calling US ports are required to change over to low sulphur fuel oil (LSFO) for general steaming and usage in US waters, under co-ordinates prescribed in Annex VI of the new MARPOL.


However, there is no need to change over to marine gas oil (MGO) for emission control at berth like that suggested by EU directive. The North America ECA covers waters adjacent to the Pacific coast, Atlantic/Gulf coast and eight Hawaiian Islands. It extends up to 200 miles from the coast of United States, Canada and the French territories.

The fourth ECA which is the United States Caribbean Sea ECA and covers waters adjacent to Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands, was designated under the MARPOL amendments of July 2011 and will be enforced in Jan.2013 with new ECA to be effective from Jan 2014.

MARPOL comprises of two methods for emission control. The first one deals with control of emission from all ships due to fuel sulfur content and nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions from the engines, while the second one specifies areas for emission control with more strict limits on Sulfur content of fuel and nitrogen oxide emissions.

For ships operating, trading or transiting The North American Emission Control Area, the sulfur content of fuel is required to be not more than 1.0% m/m (expressed in terms of % m/m – that is, by weight) or 10000 ppm, and which will be further reduced to 0.1% m/m or 1000 ppm by 1st January 2015.

Most of the ships have storage capacity to store and use two or more different types of fuel, but for complying with 2015 requirements, some vessels will need to be modified to store the distillate fuel. Some ship owners might also opt to control the sulfur content in their ships’ exhaust by fitting scrubbers or other exhaust gas cleaning devices.

There was a general sentiment in the shipping market that the designation of North American ECA will encourage shipping companies to divert shipments from U.S. ports to nearby ports, which are not designated as ECA. However ECA designation did not affect this underlying reason for preferring one port over the other as lot of other factors such as facilities, land based multi-modal means of transport and their geographic location were in favor of U.S. Ports. This rule is thus expected to increase the operating cost for a ship by about 3 percent. However Canada has delayed its implementation and is expected to follow by November 2012.

The favorable impact of the ECA will be reduction of air pollution (emission control) from ships with cleaner air and downsize of health expenses being incurred even miles inland in the US and Canada. The core ideology of the North American ECA role played by EPA of the US has been to reduce air pollution from ships by keeping a check on the emission control. The EPA claims that implementation of North American ECA will improve air quality significantly in Grand Canyon National Park and the Great Smoky mountains. Adding up other benefits it is said that by 2020 it will prevent 5,500 to 14000 premature deaths and 49, 00,000 cases of acute respiratory symptoms, which surely saves huge spending on health care benefits.

Thus North American ECA implementation proves to be a win-win situation for the US Health Care Department. The North American EPA will ease off the costs of health care and welfare in US by keeping a check on emission control from ships and will also prevent taking a toll on budgets of ship owners and operators.

Amendments to MARPOL Annex VI (Prevention of air pollution from ships) have formally established a North American Emission Control Area (ECA), in which emissions of certain air pollutants from ships are subject to more stringent controls than the limits that apply globally. The ECA will take effect on August 1, 2012, when the US and Canada will begin to enforce the new controls.

This will be the third ECA established by the International Maritime Organization under MARPOL Annex VI; the other two cover the Baltic Sea area and the North Sea area. A fourth—the US Caribbean Sea ECA—is expected to come into effect in 2014 for the waters surrounding Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.

North American ECA Will Change Shipping Forever

MARPOL Annex VI and ECAs

IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) created Annex VI to MARPOL in 1997 to set limits on sulphur oxide (SOx) and nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions from ship exhausts and to prohibit deliberate emissions of ozone depleting substances (such as CFC). This started with a global cap on the sulphur content of fuel oil. Provisions in the annex allow for special SOx Emission Control Areas (SECAs) to be established with more stringent controls on sulphur emissions. In these areas, ships must use fuel oil with sulphur content drastically lower than the global limit, or use some technological method to limit SOx emissions.

The Baltic Sea is designated as a SOx Emission Control Area in the original annex. Later amendments in July 2005 designated the North Sea as a SOx Emission Control Area, which has been enforced since November 2007

2008 Revision

MARPOL Annex VI was revised in 2008. The main changes were as follows:

Reduce the global cap on sulphur content in fuel oil to 3.50% (effective January 2012), then progressively down to 0.50 % (effective January 2020)

1.                            Reduce limits applicable in Sulphur Emission Control Areas (SECAs) to 1.00% sulphur content (effective July 2010), being further reduced to 0.10% (effective January 2015)

2.                            Reduce limits on nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions from marine engines, with the most stringent controls on so-called "Tier III" engines (i.e., those installed on ships after January 2016) operating in Emission Control Areas.

The revised Annex VI also allows for an Emission Control Area to limit emissions on particular groups of air pollutants:

1.                            SOx and particulate matter (PM);

2.                            NOx alone; or

3.                            all three types of emissions from ships (SOx, NOx, and PM)

Thus, the previously established Sulphur Emission Controls Areas have dropped “Sulphur” from the title since the areas may now control nitrogen and particulates as


At the time of writing, 136 countries (shaded green above), representing 98% of the world's shipping tonnage, are party to MARPOL, and thus, Annex VI.

Prime Suspects

Annex VI deals with a long list of pollutants, but those of primary concern are CO2, SOx, NOx and PM. Why is this important?

Sulphur Oxide (SOx)

Sulphur Oxide (abbreviated SOx) combines with moisture in the air to form “acid rain,” which can cause serious damage to plant and animal life, cause paint to peel, corrode steel structures such as bridges, and erode stone statues. Most of eastern Europe from Poland northward into Scandinavia, the eastern third of the United States, and southeastern Canada are significantly impacted by acid rain.

The global fuel sulphur cap of 3.5% implemented in 2011 did not impose an arduous burden for the shipping or bunker supply industries as 3.5% sulphur fuel was widely available. However, the further reduction of that cap to 0.5% in 2020 (and to 0.1% in ECAs in 2015) will effectively make distillate oil impracticable as a fuel for ships.

Nitrogen Oxide (NOx)

Nitrogen Oxide (abbreviated NOx) also combines with water to form damaging corrosive acids, is toxic by inhalation, and is a contributor to smog formation. NOx is produced from the excess air required for complete combustion of fuel oils, which introduces nitrogen into the combustion reactions. At high temperatures, nitrogen in the atmosphere combines with oxygen to form NOx. Limiting NOx production demands the precise control of the amount of air used in combustion.

NOx emission limits are set for diesel engines depending on the engine maximum operating speed, separated in three tiers. Tier I and Tier II limits are global, while the Tier III standards apply only in NOx Emission Control Areas.

Particulate Matter (PM)

Particulate Matter (PM) is smoke or soot emanating from the ship’s exhaust. It is partially burned hydrocarbon material that includes condensed aromatic forms. These molecules include free radicals that can cause respiratory ailments and cancer. On ships, in addition to being a health hazard, PM causes stubborn oily acidic deposits causing corrosion to metal. Smaller particles can be caught by the wind and transported over great distances. Some deposit on and discolor glaciers and ice sheets and this has been associated with the promotion of accelerated ice melt.

There are no explicit PM emission limits. PM emission is directly related to SOx emissions, so reduced SOx emission consequently reduces PM emission.

The North American ECA


On March 26, 2010, IMO’s MEPC adopted amendments to MARPOL Annex VI designating an ECA covering specific portions of US, Canadian and French waters (i.e., Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon, off the coast of Newfoundland). The ECA runs along North America’s Pacific coast, the Atlantic/Gulf coast and the Hawaiian Islands. It extends up to 200 nautical miles from coasts of the United States, Canada and the French territories, except that it does not extend into marine areas subject to the sovereignty or jurisdiction of other States (like Mexico or the Caribbean nations).

US Caribbean Sea ECA and Plans for Others

In July 2011, IMO’s MEPC again adopted amendments to MARPOL Annex VI designating an ECA covering certain waters adjacent to the coasts of Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, to be called the US Caribbean Sea ECA. The amendments adopted in July 2011 are expected to enter into force in January 2013, with the new ECA taking effect January 2014.

Experts expect proposals for other ECAs to be submitted to the MEPC in the near future. Most likely candidates are the coastal waters of Mexico and Japan. Norway is also expected to propose an ECA for its coastal waters in the Norwegian Sea, which would be the first ECA in Arctic waters. Proposals for ECAs in the Mediterranean Sea and Straits of Malacca are also expected; however, it will likely be years before it is feasible to meet ECA requirements in these highly trafficked areas.


Avoiding ECAs is not practical for all but smaller feeder shipping lines. Especially with new ECAs expected in the near future, shipping lines will not be able to route vessels away from ECAs, and so they must find a way to comply with ECA requirements. Presently, they have three options:

Diligent fuel switching

Ultra-low sulphur distillate fuel is too expensive to use 100% of the time. Vessels might burn the right fuel in the right place, switching to low sulphur diesel when entering ECAs. But this creates new problems of segregated tankage and is reliant on the ship changing over to the right fuel at the right time.

Use Scrubbers

Exhaust Gas Scrubber (EGS) technology is being considered to remove sulphur and particulate matter from exhaust. It does work, and it would enable the ship to continue using the same fuel in use presently, but it must also be operated in conjunction with Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) technology to neutralize NOx. SCR is the injection of ammonia or urea into hot exhaust gas over a catalyst (e.g. titanium dioxide). This converts the NOx back into component nitrogen and oxygen. EGS + SCR is still relatively expensive, and largely untested.

Switch to LNG

There are few LNG-fueled vessels in service, but a full range of approved designs from barges to ultra large container vessels already exist. Major marine engine manufacturers all offer duel fuel (i.e., LNG and distillate fuel oil) or total-LNG fueled engines. LNG-fueled vessels could cost up to 20% more than an equivalent oil fueled vessel, but this premium could be offset by lower operating costs (and may be the only option for complying with ECA requirements after 2015). Though LNG is less costly than fuel oil at the moment, LNG infrastructure is still developing. LNG-fueled vessels have to factor bunkering into route plans, as just a few ports can offer LNG bunker service. Also, LNG just isn’t an option for existing vessels as retrofitting an oil fueled vessel to use LNG is not practical.


The creation of the North American and US Caribbean Sea ECAs was originated (in part) by the US EPA to improve air quality and reduce adverse health effects of air pollution in the US. However, with four ECAs in effect by the end of this year, a large portion of the world’s shipping fleet will be obligated to comply with ECA requirements. And, with more stringent controls on the horizon, the global shipping industry is headed for a major change.

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