U.S. Ballast Water Rules will Cost Canadians $1.1 Billion

by Ship & Bunker News Team
Tuesday October 29, 2013

U.S. ballast water treatment regulations will cost the Canadian economy CAD1.1 billion ($1.1 billion) over the next five years, according to a new report from the Canadian Shipowners Association (CSA).

The report, written by Martin Associates, found that the rules, which go into effect next year, could shift shipments of grain, aggregates, and petroleum products to other modes of transportation.

"The American regulations will distort commercial markets as it exempts all vessels that operate west of Anticosti Island, which essentially results in the exemption of the American fleet while demanding that the majority of Canadian vessels absorb the cost of developing and installing technology," CSA said.

The association also said the appropriate technology for complying with the regulations does not yet exist, although an initiative by Canadian companies and the Great Ships Initiative, a group dedicated to addressing the issue of invasive species in the Great Lakes, to test ballast water treatments is expected to be completed by the end of 2013.

"We believe that a flexible approach that builds on recent successful efforts to mitigate risk will still allow for current levels of competition and risk management and will reconcile protection of the marine environment with the economic viability of our industry and those that we support," said CSA president Robert Lewis-Manning.

The CSA said in April that the rules on ballast water treatment set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are "unachievable."