MEPC 74 finalised finalised amendments to MARPOL Annex VI in respect of sampling of “in-use” and “onboard” fuel oil. Ships will be required to have dedicated sampling points for the taking of samples of in-use fuel no later than the first renewal survey that occurs 12 months or more after entry into force of the regulation. Amendments to Appendix VI set out the procedures for testing of the delivered, in-use and onboard samples
A number of sets of guidelines were also finalised in respect of the implementation of the sulphur cap, including Guidelines for the Consistent Implementation of the 2020 Sulphur Limit, Guidelines for Port State control under MARPOL Annex VI and Guidance on Contingency Measures in addressing Non-Compliant Fuel.
The Guidelines for Consistent Implementation are aimed at “Administrations, port States, shipowners, shipbuilders and fuel oil suppliers, as appropriate”, and cover types of fuel, technical considerations, verification issues and situations of non-availability of compliant fuel, including a standard format for a FONAR. The Port State Control Guidelines set out procedures for ship inspections and how to deal with a FONAR. Where a vessel has been obliged to take on non-compliant fuel because of non-availability of compliant fuel, the question has been posed as to how any ROB should be dealt with once compliant fuel has been sourced. Suggestions that it should be burnt on the high seas in accordance with strict conditions were rebuffed and the Guidance on Contingency Measures offers such suggestions as de-bunkering or “managing the non-compliant fuel in accordance with a method acceptable to the port State”.
The various guidelines can be found in the Members’ Area.