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            august 23, 2019

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Danger of scrubber discharges is 'fake news'


Ports that announce bans on open-loop scrubbers are "peddling fake news" and should act on scientific grounds and ignore "sensationalist statements", says the Clean Shipping Alliance 2020.
Earlier this week, the UAE Port of Fujairah joined Singapore in banning the use of open-loop scrubbers, noted London's Lloyd's List. Singapore announced its decision to ban the discharge of wastewater from open-loop exhaust cleaning systems last November.
"Ports have the right to mandate their own requirements and it is commonplace for local administrations to continually assess their ship discharge requirements," said the group's executive director Ian Adams.
"But to link these decisions to sensationalist statements in the scrubber debate, without any reference to scientific data, is unfounded, unreasonable and impacts port clients while perpetuating the spread of factually incorrect information."
The alliance is a grouping of commercial and passenger shipping companies that formed at the end of last year to promote the use of scrubbers as a means of meeting International Maritime Organisation 2020 low-sulphur fuel rules.
While it accepts that ports have the right to impose discharge restrictions, it is critical of industry reports that a ban on wastewater discharges could restrict the uptake of open-loop scrubbers.
"To start speculating that this will have an impact on global rules or, indeed, the wider take up of open- and closed-loop scrubbers is wrong," Mr Adams said. "It is peddling fake news."
Carnival vice-president Michael Kaczmarek said that it was understandable that the discharge of scrubber wash waters would figure in some local discharge discussions.
"However, we strongly encourage any port considering a restriction to first investigate the existing data before creating such an impact on their shipping clients."
Mr Kaczmarek also said that while there was no scientific evidence that scrubber wash water discharged into the sea, the International Maritime Organization considered the issue before confirming the acceptability of exhaust gas cleaning systems as a means of compliance.

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