Ballast Water Management - How to do it (I624E) - 2017 Edition

Number of Pages:
Published Date:
October 2017
Book Height:
210 mm
Book Width:
150 mm
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This publication provides practical information to Governments, particularly those of developing countries, Administrations, ship owners, port State control authorities, environmental agencies and other stakeholders on the implications of ratifying and enforcing the Ballast Water Management Convention.

This publication includes extensive guidance on implementing each regulation of the Ballast Water Management Convention, from general applicability to exceptions and exemptions. Consideration is also given to crew training and personnel administration. It should be noted that this is a reference document and, for legal purposes, the authentic text of the Convention should always be consulted.

Harmful aquatic organisms and pathogens present a major threat to marine ecosystems and shipping has been identified as a significant pathway for introducing species to new environments. The problem has increased with the introduction of steel hulls, allowing ships to use water instead of solid materials as ballast, and in particular over the last few decades as trade and traffic volumes have expanded. The effects of the introduction of non-indigenous species have, in many areas of the world, been devastating. Quantitative data show that the rate of bio-invasions is continuing to increase significantly. As the volumes of seaborne trade continue to increase, the problem may not yet have reached its peak.

The Convention aims to prevent, minimise and ultimately eliminate risks to the environment, human health, property and resources arising from the transfer of harmful aquatic organisms and pathogens, by establishing standards and procedures for the management and control of ships’ ballast water and sediments.

Under the Convention, ships to which the Convention’s provisions apply will be required to manage their ballast water and sediments to a certain standard, according to a ship specific ballast water management plan (BWMP). Ships will also have to carry a ballast water record book (BWRB) and an International Ballast Water Management Certificate (IBWMC). The ballast water management standards will be phased in over a period of time. Initially, ships subject to the Convention’s ballast water requirements will be required to exchange ballast water mid-ocean. In due course these ships are required to meet a performance standard that limits the number of organisms in discharged ballast water.

Parties to the Convention are given the option to take additional measures, which are subject to criteria set out in the Convention and relevant guidelines for its uniform implementation.

The Convention consists of articles and annexes which include legal requirements, technical standards and regulations for the control and management of ships’ ballast water and sediments. There are also various resolutions and circulars developed by the Organization relating to it.

Part 1 Rights and obligations

1.2 Structure and components of the Convention

1.3 Rights and obligations under the Convention

1.4 Jurisdiction

Part 2 Meeting obligations

2.1 Means of meeting obligations

Part 3 Legal aspects

3.1 Integrating the Convention in domestic law

3.2 Legal aspects of enforcement

Part 4 Implementing the regulations

4.1 Implementing Section A (general provisions)

4.2 Implementing Section B (management and control requirements for ships)

4.3 Implementing Section C (special requirements in certain areas)

4.4 Implementing Section D (standards for ballast water management)

4.5 Implementing Section E (survey and certification requirements for ballast water management)

4.6 Ballast water sampling

4.7 Approval of ballast water management systems (Guidelines (G8))

4.8 Approval of ballast water management systems using active substances (Procedure (G9))

4.9 Duties of ship owners

4.10 Ballast water management options available for ships

Part 5 Technical aspects of enforcement

5.1 Non-compliance detection and response

5.2 Guidance for port State control

Part 6 Organization

6.1 Training of personnel

6.2 Guidelines, circulars and other IMO instruments relevant to the Convention

As a specialized agency of the United Nations, IMO is the global standard setting authority for the safety, security and environmental performance of international shipping. Its main role is to create a regulatory framework for the shipping industry that is fair and effective, universally adopted and universally implemented.

In other words, its role is to create a level playing field so that ship operators cannot address their financial issues by simply cutting corners and compromising on safety, security and environmental performance. This approach also encourages innovation and efficiency.

Shipping is a truly international industry, and it can only operate effectively if the regulations and standards are themselves agreed, adopted and implemented on an international basis. And IMO is the forum at which this process takes place.

Number of Pages:
Published Date:
October 2017
Book Height:
210 mm
Book Width:
150 mm


Binding Format:
Publication Date:
October 2017