MTF: Close Gaps in ISM, STCW and MLC to Safely Scale Decarbonization

A new report from MTF provides recommendations on closing gaps i

Published Apr 21, 2023 9:20 PM by The Maritime Executive

The Maritime Technologies Forum (MTF) has released a report on current operational management practices and crew training requirements and issued recommendations on how to close those gaps to accelerate safe maritime decarbonization.

The review identifies the gaps in achieving safe maritime decarbonization within three existing Conventions / Codes: The International Safety Management (ISM) Code, the International Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers (STCW) and The Maritime Labour Convention (MLC); and makes suitable recommendations to close these gaps. The report also highlights the perceived urgency to close these gaps so the maritime industry can better prioritise limited resources.

To be able to meet the required decarbonization targets, all industry-relevant stakeholders should collaborate towards safe adoption of alternative fuels including on key issues in relation to the three regulations that are discussed in this report:
•    ISM: Identification of hazards and risks from the operation of alternative fuels is essential for developing and implementing the safety management system, emergency procedures and related maintenance activities.
•    STCW: Industry collaboration is needed to address current regulatory uncertainties, insufficiencies within model courses and inconsistent implementation of training. Considering the need for funding the future training course development and delivery, a fraction of future revenues from market-based measures might be earmarked appropriately.
•    MLC: Reference to alternative fuels could be made in Part B of the Code and international guidelines which will ensure that the member States will address the relevant requirements in their national legislation.

Commenting on the report, Jun Kohno, Deputy Director-General for the Engineering Affairs Maritime Bureau for Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT), said:
“If we are to meet the decarbonization targets set by IMO, it is important that we continue to work together with industry to address gaps in operational management practices and regulatory schemes. This report spotlights and helps prioritize the changes needed to support the safe and scalable use of alternative fuels in the maritime industry.”

Nick Brown, CEO of Lloyd’s Register which led the study, said: “Understanding the challenges in safely adopting alternative fuels at scale is a critical step to accelerating maritime decarbonisation. This research, led by LR Lead Marine Consultant Yildiz Williams, provides much needed clarity on the hurdles we face as an industry in the safe operation of alternative fuels and the recommendations to overcome those challenges.”
Download the full report by clicking here.

About MTF
The MTF is a forum of Flag States and Classification Societies established to provide technical and regulatory expertise to benefit the maritime industry. The role of the Forum is to work together on research which it will publish to the maritime industry and draw on regulatory expertise to be able to offer unbiased advice to the shipping sector. It will seek to give guidance on the use of alternative fuels and increased levels of automation in the industry. Furthermore, it will allow for the safe testing and adoption of new technologies and it will help shape world-leading regulation.  The Flag State administrations include Maritime Bureau, Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, Japan; the Norwegian Maritime Authority; and the Maritime and Coastguard Agency, United Kingdom. The Classification Society members are ABS, DNV, LR and ClassNK.

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