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Environmental regulations: navigating an ocean of complexity

The environment needs all the help it can get. In that respect new regulations that safeguard marine ecosystems should be welcomed

However, argues Børge Hetland, NAVTOR CCO, their increasing frequency, scope and stringency creates a complex patchwork of legislation… and a potential financial minefield for owners and operators that must comply, or pay the price. Thankfully, there is a solution…

Environmental regulations are changing all the time.

Increasing awareness of the delicate state of the natural world, and gathering pressure from society, has sparked the touch paper for a new breed of international, national and local legislation. Much has been done already, but much more is to come (e.g. a new Mediterranean emissions control area, ECA, is looming on the horizon). The pressure on our industry is mounting.

Forward thinking owners and operators always try to be one step ahead of the curve, ensuring compliance today, tomorrow and far into the future.

But, with the sheer variety of laws (right down to individual port level) how can they guarantee they’re sailing on the right side of the law?

At NAVTOR we have the solution.

Planning, execution, compliance

Last year NAVTOR signed an agreement with Total Marine Solutions (TMS) of Florida to integrate the firm’s Ocean Guardian solution into our own NavStation digital chart table.

Ocean Guardian launched in 2017 to simplify access to critical regulatory requirements worldwide – covering all international, national, regional and port jurisdictions. All information is vetted by a third-party maritime law firm and updated bi-weekly.

By overlaying that data on top of digital charts on the NavStation, bridge officers can see exactly what they need to do, and where, to conform to all relevant regulations.

This can be utilised at planning stage – so, for example, crews are aware that all drains and outlets must be covered at The Port of Kalajoki, Finland, while they must also gain permission from the port authority for any vessel welding or hot work – with automatic alerts appearing on the NavStation when they approach areas where regulations come into force.

In short, vessels can plan for complete compliance and then be made aware of exactly what to do when the time comes to conform.

It is seamless. It is simple.

Suddenly environmental regulation becomes far easier to navigate.

Unlocking benefits

No deviations from the letter of the law, means no costly fines (particularly in the US and EU) and no unwanted bottom line impact. Providing proof of compliance to authorities is straightforward with the system producing necessary reports at the push of a button.

It’s an innovative partnership that neatly encapsulates our mission here at NAVTOR – to simplify tasks for navigators, with enhanced safety and reduced vessel administration, and enable smarter, more profitable and efficient operations for vessels, fleets and shipowners around the world.

We believe e-Navigation can unlock huge benefits for the industry – complete environmental compliance is just one of them.

Get in touch with NAVTOR to find out more.

Happy (and compliant!) sailing everyone.




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