News
Jul 19, 2017

Global treaty to halt invasive aquatic species to enter into force in 2017


The International Convention for the Control and Management of Ships' Ballast Water and Sediments (BWM Convention) will enter into force on 8 September 2017.

 

Ballast water is routinely taken on by ships for stability and structural integrity. It can contain thousands of aquatic microbes, algae and animals, which are then carried across the world’s oceans and released into ecosystems where they are not native.

 

Untreated ballast water released at a ship’s destination could potentially introduce a new invasive aquatic species. Expanded ship trade and traffic volume over the last few decades has increased the likelihood of invasive species being released. Hundreds of invasions have already taken place, sometimes with devastating consequences for the local ecosystem.

 

The Ballast Water Management Convention will require all ships in international trade to manage their ballast water and sediments to certain standards, according to a ship-specific ballast water management plan. All ships will also have to carry a ballast water record book and an International Ballast Water Management Certificate. The ballast water performance standard will be phased in over a period of time. Most ships will need to install an on-board system to treat ballast water and eliminate unwanted organisms. More than 60 type-approved systems are already available.

 

The BWM Convention will enter into force on 8 September 2017.  Read more here

Solway Firth Partnership