DMF December e-Newsletter

If you have any news or events that you would like included in the next edition of the DMF news please contact Steve Guilbert

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DMF News


Special Feature: Ballast Water Management

Some members of DMF will be aware of the issue of the transfer of invasive species around the globe in ships’ ballast water. This issue has caused a number of catastrophes around the globe, including the deaths of nearly 10,000 people in Peru from a cholera bacterium that got into the local water supply. You may also be aware that the International Maritime Organisation drew up a convention to prevent this as long ago as 2004. However, it was only to come into force twelve months after 30 nations had signed up to it, representing 35% of global shipping tonnage. We long since topped the 30 nations, but only on the 7th September past did Finland sign and tipped the tonnage percentage over the required figure. The new regulations will therefore come into effect on the 7th September next year. There remains a great deal of confusion as to how these regulations will be implemented, and this is creating potential risks.

  • Over-complicated procedures will create added costs and burdens on ports and shipowners, to the detriment of international trade, or…
  • Countries will consider the matter to be too complicated, and systems of compliance will be theoretical only and will fail to achieve the legitimate goal behind the legislation.

The South West has taken a lead in trying to create a satisfactory set of protocols, and a Community Interest Company has been formed to bring together an influential international grouping to agree on practical steps. Membership of the grouping already comprises or hopes to comprise representation from Gibraltar, South of France, Cyprus, South Africa, California, Panama and New Zealand.  The Community Interest Company is called Consortium for Invasive Species Management, and the Chief Scientist, Dr David Wright, is the Co-Chair of the IMarEST Ballast Water Experts Group and the Emeritus Professor of Environmental Toxicology at the University of Maryland.

If anyone has a particular interest in this subject or wants to know more, they should contact Chris Marrow on

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