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Discharges of oil and ballast water by vow85608


									                       Position Paper 008
                          Approved 2002–09

Discharges of Oil and Ballast Water
How to get in contact with Nordtest

Tekniikantie 12
FIN-02150 Espoo
Phone: +358 9 455 4600
Fax: +358 9 455 4272

Nordtest, founded in 1973, is an institution under the Nordic
Council of Ministers and acts as a joint Nordic body in the field
of conformity assessment. The emphasis is on the development
of Nordic test methods and on Nordic co-operation concerning
conformity assessment. The main task is to take part in the de-
velopment of international pre-normative activity. Nordtest is
yearly funding projects in its field of activity.

The Nordic Council of Ministers is a forum for co-operation be-
tween the Nordic governments. The Nordic Council of Ministers
implements Nordic co-operation. The Prime Ministers have the
overall responsibility. The activities are co-ordinated by the Nor-
dic ministers for co-operation, The Nordic Committee for Co-
operation and portfolio ministers. The Nordic Council of Minis-
ters was founded in 1971.
                                                                                    (Photo Sintef)

NORDTEST views on
Discharges of oil and ballast water
A Trends Analysis Workshop has been held in Copenhagen the 16th September 2002. The work-
shop was a cooperation between CEN STAR and Nordtest. Trends Analysis Workshops are stra-
tegically important since they promote new standardisation work and promulgate their agreed
views. The Workshop has arrived at the following views and recommendations:

In order to safeguard the environment, health and safety, the Workshop recommends that Eu-
ropean standardisation work on the identification of oil discharges should continue. The Work-
shop also wishes to recommend a common European standard for the measurement of dis-
charges of alien organisms in watercourses so that environmental impact may be alleviated. It
is also important that the authorities make information available regarding different regula-
tions so that all parties are aware of the rules.

The goal of the Workshop was to provide an overview of trends and the need for research and
standardisation in the Workshop's subject area "Discharges of Oil and Ballast Water". Delegates
from Denmark, Norway, Finland and UK gave talks at the workshop. The delegates represented
firms, shipping companies, authorities and standardisation from 11 countries.
In 2001, 389 oil discharges were noted in the whole Baltic Sea region. It is in fact estimated that
the real quantity is about 10,000 discharges annually. These illegal discharges constitute one of
the serious environmental threats in the Baltic.

In order that the liability of the polluter may be established, it must be possible to prove that
the oil discharge actually derives from the suspected ship. A good and effective analytical
method is needed. The method must also have official status so that the results should carry
greater weight in e.g. the courts. The Nordtest method NT Chem 001 Oil Spill Identification
that is used in identifying oil discharges is being updated. Work is in progress on making this
method into a European Standard.

The large volumes of ballast water which arrive with ships from countries with a fauna differ-
ent from that in the Nordic countries is another environmental threat. The ballast water con-
tains organisms that can cause great damage to industry, environment and health. They can for
instance penetrate into different cooling systems and cause economic damage, they may con-
tain pathogenic bacteria, and, last but not least, they disrupt the ecological balance with unpre-
dictable consequences.

In December 1980, an oil spill resulted in the death of a large number of birds and pollution of
beaches on the Danish and Swedish west coast and in Oslo Fjord. Oil samples were taken from
several suspected ships and these samples and samples from birds and beaches were analysed
by authorised laboratories in Denmark, Sweden and Norway. The analyses, which were per-
formed in accordance with the Nordtest method NT Chem 001, showed that the oil could only
originate in a tanker which was on its way from Rotterdam to Oslo to take in cargo. The ship
had cleansed its tanks while in the North Sea.

Tis example demonstrates that there is an evident need for an effective analytical method in
order that oil discharges may be identified. Development of a common analytical method
began with a Nordtest project "Oil spills at sea" at the end of 1975. The object of the project
was to map the activity in the Nordic countries in the analytical area and to evaluate the
possibilities of collaboration in developing a common methodology for sampling, characterisa-
tion and identification of oil spills. As a result, in 1977 the Nordic laboratories began extensive
collaboration on developing reliable methodology. The new methodology was approved in
1983 as the Nordtest Method NT Chem 001. The method was revised and a new version was
approved in 1991. This Nordtest Method has been used as the basis for identification systems
for oil spills in several countries and has influenced, among others, ASTM D 5739-95. The
Nordtest Method has been proposed as a European EN Standard and in 1999 it was circulated
for comments in the European countries.

The Nordtest method has been applied in identifying oil spills, especially in legal processes. It
is possible to establish whether the oil discharged at sea is the same as that found in the tanks
of the suspected ship. It is pointed out that the analysis results are only part of the process and
that they support the general legal investigation. The Polluter Pays principle which is a corner-
stone of environmental legislation highlights the need for a common procedure of the Nordtest
Method type as regards identification of the ship that is responsible for the discharge.

Oil is a natural product, and oils differ from one another depending of where they were
formed and how this process occurred. Depending on pressure and temperature, organic
materials are transformed into different hydrocarbons from which the oil is formed. Oil from
terrestrial materials is thus different from oil from e.g. marine materials. The composition of the
oil is also affected by how rapidly it had formed, the geological processes after formation, the
oxygen content of the atmosphere, the age of the oil, and so on. A gas chromatogram of an oil
from a certain specific deposit has its own identifiable fingerprint.

The problem is that oil, as a complex organic material, changes because of weathering when
it leaks out into the sea. Compounds from the oil evaporate, they dissolve in water, the oil
takes up water and forms an emulsion, etc. In the analytical process the oil is heated to
separate the compounds, but during this process the compounds may decompose or combine
with one another, and chemical compounds which were not there from the outset are found.
The analytical results are complex and difficult to interpret.

The updated Nordtest Method is based on analysis of biomarkers and PAH groups in the oil, as
well as the use of advanced statistical analysis to make the Nordtest Method more precise and
easier to apply. The term biomarker refers to specific compounds that are a distinctive feature
of each oil and vary from oil to oil. It may be a matter of the presence of certain compounds
in a certain type of oil or a specific concentration ratio of two compounds. Biomarkers and
their relative concentrations are not susceptible to the weathering of oil.

The transfer of large volumes of water containing organisms from shallow coastal areas over
natural barriers may result in massive growth and establishment of marine organisms which
would not otherwise have been present. Ballast water is normally taken on board in coastal
areas and may therefore contain a varied flora of organisms – both marine and brackish water
species. This means that most ships carry marine organisms in their ballast water, with the
result that organisms are spread and affect marine ecosystems. It may be assumed that at any
time 3000 – 4000 marine species are transported in ships' ballast water, and that a broad
spectrum of zooplankton, phytoplankton and fish are represented. This unwanted dispersal
may result in irreversible processes and the disruption of the ecological balance of the sea, in
addition to health effects on humans and economic consequences for industry.

The introduction of harmful marine organisms through ballast water can be prevented or
reduced by the establishment of management programmes and risk assessment of specific
transport routes. Implementation of control mechanisms and contingency plans, and control
and surveillance, will further reduce damage caused by the introduction of alien species.

The International Maritime Organisation (IMO) is promoting the implementation of the con-
vention for control of ballast water, International Convention for the Control and Management
of Ships' Ballast Water and Sediments. This is expected to be signed in 2003, but it is not clear
how quickly ratification of this convention will proceed. In the Nordic countries, no effective
control mechanisms or regulations with respect to ballast water management are at present
implemented. It is to be hoped that the EU will soon establish a directive for ballast water
management based on the provisions of the convention. Norway has started work on the
introduction of national measures based on the provisions and guidelines of the convention. In
a Nordic context, the problem has been discussed at the Baltic Regional Workshop on Ballast
Water Management in Tallinn in 2001, the Nordic Ballast Water Summit in January 2002 and the
North Sea Conference in March 2002.

Statement of the workshop              Discharges of oil

The workshop was initiated by request of Nordtest. The objective was to:

   Establish focus on the potentials of oil spills on the marine environment in the European
   region and to demonstrate the need for the European countries to co-ordinate efforts in
   order to identify relevant standards and report formats to manage the risk of discharges of
   oil at sea.

Specially invited expertise provided presentations on a number of aspects related to
the issue of discharges of oil at sea.

The workshop arrived at the following consensual recommendations:

   To prevent, reduce and mitigate adverse ecological, economical, safety and health effects
   caused by discharges of oil at sea, the workshop strongly advise European countries to:

1. Acknowledge that European waters and adjacent waters are exposed to unintention-
   al discharges of oil and that the marine ecosystems are vulnerable to such expo-

2. Actively support Nordic cooperation on regulations on discharges of oil taking into ac-
   count the existing and forthcoming tools of the MARPOL and IMO as well as national

3. Assist in the establishment of a European co-ordinated management system for storage,
   retrieval and analysis of data, including reporting formats and analysis procedures;

4. Assist in the establishment of standardised mitigation and control measures for the Euro-
   pean countries;

5. Enhance, support and fund research on and the development of management and mon-
   itoring support systems, technologies and other issues related to the establishment of stand-
   ards to prevent, reduce and minimise the impact of oil at sea and to cooperate in those

6. Assist and support the development of reporting templates and formats for strategies and
   contingency plans in order to manage combat operations in an environmentally most ben-
   eficial way (NEBA approach).
Topic                    Need for standardization                      Need for research Comments
Identification of        • Methodology for identification              Further research      Guidelines under
waterborne oils            of waterborne oils                          should not be         preparation / On-going
                         • Sampling of waterborne oils for             necessary             work in progress
                           oil spill identification
                         • Analytical and data processing

Physical/chemical        • Sampling strategy for surface oil                                 Important for
monitoring of oil          and for dispersed oil (in water column)                           decision–making
spill during response    • Correct sample handling                                           and “oil-budget”
operations               • Physical characterisation of surface                              estimates during
                           oil and emulsion                                                  combat operations
                         • Analytical chemical characterisation
                           of oil in the water column
                         • In-situ monitoring of oil slick thickness

Biological/chemical      • Guidelines for characterisation of          Some methodology      Deliver relevant
monitoring after oil       oil-contaminated shorelines                 development /         information for
spill incidents – oil    • Guidelines for monitoring of                improvements          documentation of:
on shore                   shorelines after acute oil spills           needed                • Damage of Natural
                         • Guidelines for in-situ shoreline                                    Resources
                           treatment techniques                                              • Monitoring the
                                                                                               effects of response
                                                                                               treatment / restoration

Standardized metho-      • Standardised laboratory methodolo-          Some improvements     To generate relevant
dologies (guidelines)      gies for characterising oils weathering     in methodology for    and good input data for
for characterizing         / appearance at sea                         oil appearance /      predicting different oils
and predicting oil       • Standardised laboratory methodology         spreading needed      weathering and
weathering / behavior      for oil spill dispersants testing                                 behavior at sea (both
at sea                   • Oil spill scenario modeling for NEBA        Better criteria for    crude oils /
                           analysis                                    NEBA-analyses         bunker fuel oils)
                                                                       needed                For use in oil spill
                                                                                             contingency planning /
                                                                                             Net Environmental
                                                                                             Benefit Analysis (NEBA)
                                                                                             of oil spill scenarios.

Identification of        • Methodology for identification of           Some improvements     Preparation of guide-
terrestrial oil spills     terrestrial oil spills                      in methodology        lines should be based
(contaminated soil       • Sampling procedures                         needed                on same concept at for
and groundwater)         • Analytical and data processing                                    identification of
                           specifications                                                    waterborne oil spills
Statement of the workshop              Ballast water

The workshop was initiated by request of Nordtest. The objective was to:

   Establish focus on the potentials of introducing non-indigenous harmful aquatic organisms
   and pathogens (including disease agents and parasites) to the European region and to
   demonstrate the need for the European countries to coordinate efforts in order to identify
   relevant standards and report formats to manage the risk of unwanted introductions.

Specially invited expertise provided presentations on a number of aspects related to
the issue of harmful introductions via the transfer of ballast water.

The workshop arrived at the following consensual recommendations:

   To prevent, reduce and mitigate adverse ecological, economical, safety and health effects
   caused by the introduction and transfer of non-indigenous aquatic organisms and patho-
   gens via ships’ ballast water and sediments, the workshop strongly advise European coun-
   tries to:

1. Acknowledge that European waters and adjacent waters are both receivers and donors of
   ballast water and associated organisms;

2. Actively support the development and rapid adoption and entry into force of the Interna-
   tional Convention for the Control and Management of Ships’ Ballast Water and Sediments,
   at IMO;

3. Assist in the implementation of the IMO ballast water reporting format and the establish-
   ment of a management system for storage, retrieval and analysis of data on ballast water

4. Assist in the establishment of standardised mitigation and control measures for the Euro-
   pean countries under the framework of the IMO Guidelines (Resolution A.868 (20)) and the
   forthcoming IMO Convention;

5. Enhance, support and fund research on and the development of management, monitor-
   ing and treatment decision support systems, technologies and other issues related to the
   establishment of standards to prevent, reduce and minimise the transfer of non- indigenous
   aquatic organisms and pathogens via ships ballast water and sediments and to co-operate
   in those activities;

6. Assist and support the development of standards and reporting formats for regional strat-
   egies and contingency plans for ballast water control and management in Europe. This
   should include support in:
   • The establishment of a system for information exchange and early warning by making
     use of existing mechanisms and procedures (e.g. HELCOM Monitoring of Abnormal Nat-
     ural Events, ICES Working Group on Harmful Algal Blooms);
   • The establishment of national and regional contingency plans for high risk ballast water
   • The IMO Resolution and the forthcoming IMO Convention as well as outcomes of the
     Baltic Regional Workshop on Ballast Water Management held at Tallinn in October 2001,
     the Nordic Ballast Water Summit held at Høvik, Norway in January 2002 and the North
     Sea Conference held in Bergen in March 2000.
Topic           Need for        Need for research              Comments
Treatment       Technology         Substantial work has        A standard form for presenting principles and functionality
technology      principle and      and is undertaken           and costs related to implementation, use and maintenance
                functionality      on treatment methods        of the developed technology can be advised. No research
                standard           of ballast water. Further   is needed to produce this standard. Some protocol already
                                   research on this topic is   exists and these should be assessed and made feasible.
                                   still needed

Treatment       Ballast water      Research related to         Each treatment technology developed needs to be tested
technology      standard           defining a ballast water    and verified for the purpose of identifying application of
                treatment          standard is ongoing         use. For this purpose there is a need for ballast water
                                   and substantial further     standard against which the technology can be tested.
                                   work is still needed.       IMO / MEPC is at present working on establishing such
                                   Broad research is need-     a standard and further work should be supported until a
                                   ed for this purpose         proposed standard is given by IMO, expected 2002/2003.
                                   and the responsibility      IMO should be supported as responsible for defining the
                                   for this task should not    ballast water standard.
                                   be limited to a specific

Treatment       Validation         No research is regard-      Each treatment technology developed and tested according
technology      standard           ed as necessary for this    to a ballast water standard need to be validated and certi-
                                   purpose. Many proto-        fied at implementation. A standard for such contents and
                                   cols exist that be used     level of detail of such validation and certification is
                                   as basis for a uniform,     recommended produced. The responsibility for producing
                                   global validation proto-    such a standard should be developed by an international
                                   col.                        body, but awaited until the ballast water standard is
                                                               produced. Uniform, global validation standard should be
                                                               supported, avoiding differing approaches.

Ballast water   Monitoring &       Research should not         To minimise the effect of secondary introductions of
contingency     Reporting          be necessary.               harmful organisms (i.e. further distribution of introduced
plan            standard                                       organisms in regional waters) in ballast water there is a
                                                               need for both national and regional contingency plans and
                                                               warning system. Standardised functionality and reporting
                                                               procedures will be decisive for the quality and value of the
                                                               effort added in the aim of reducing the impact of introdu-
                                                               ced organisms.

Invasive        Survey &           Research should not         Monitoring of the water column has been undertaken for
species         Monitoring         be necessary.               long period of time and substantial competence on this
surveys         standard                                       issue exists in most sea bordering countries. Based upon
monitoring      Report standard                                reports produced by scientific bodies undertaking such
                                                               monitoring a standard reporting format and monitoring
                                                               routine should be produced. Standard invasive species
                                                               survey & monitoring methods have been developed
                                                               and can be applied in many countries.

Ballast water Ballast water        Research should not         A substantial number of countries specific ballast water
treatment incl. treatment report   be necessary.               report formats exist worldwide encompassing reporting on
exchange        standard.                                      undertaken ballast water exchange. These standards need
reporting                                                      to be updated to meet reporting on other treatment
                                                               methods. IMO has outlined one standard that hence also
                                                               needs updating with respect to treatment technology used.
                                                               The IMO standard is recommended assessed according to
                                                               other standards and updated if found appropriate. This
                                                               standard should be recommended used in all Nordic and
                                                               European countries as well as other countries.
Nordtest Methods

Oil spill identification
Edition 2, approved 1991-02, 24 pages

Performance Testing of Oil Spill Skimmers
Approved 2002-11, 10 pages

Preparation of Water-In-Oil Emulsion for Testing of Oil Spill Response Equipment
Approved 2002-11, 13 pages
Nordtest Technical Reports
442 / Bergström, U. & Jansson, B., Improvements of the method for analysis of chlorinated
paraffins. Espoo 1999. Nordtest, NT Techn Report 442. 13 p. NT Project No. 1337-96.

444 / Viitala, N., Oil spill identification & Absorbing materials for oil spill sampling. Espoo
1999. Nordtest, NT Techn Report 444. 71 p. Nt Project No. 1427-98.

472 / Andersen, A. B., Lund, M., Borgnes, D. & Mjelde, A., Simplified NOx emission proce-
dures. Høvik 2001. Det Norske Veritas AS, Report nr. 99-3580. 83 p. NT Project No. 1464-99.

497 / Faksness, L.-G., Daling, P. S. & Hansen, A. B., CEN/BTF/TF 120 Oil Spill Identification
Summary Report: Round Robin Test Series B. Trondheim 2002. SINTEF report No. STF66
A02038, ISBN 82-14-02678-4. 49 p. NT Project No. 1520-00.

498 / Faksness, L.-G., Weiss, H. M. & Daling, P. S., Revision of the Nordtest Methodology for
Oil Spill Identification. Trondheim 2002. SINTEF Report No. STF66 A02028, ISBN 82-14-
02680-6. 110 p. NT Project No. 1520-00.

499 / Daling, P. S. & Faksness, L.-G., Laboratory and reporting instructions for the CEN/BT/
TF 120 Oil Spill Identification - Round Robin Test - May, 2001. Trondheim 2002. SINTEF Re-
port No. STF66 A02027, ISBN 82-14-02677-6, 54 p. NT Project No. 1520-00.

502 / CEN/STAR Trends Analysis workshop, Discharges of Oil and Ballast Water. Held in
Copenhagen 16th sept. 2002. y p. NT Project No. 1567-01.

These documents can be downloaded from Nordtest web site: or can be
ordered from the Nordtest secretariat free of charge.
APPROVED 2002-09

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