IMCA head of marine policy and regulatory affairs Margaret Fitzgerald looks back at an active year for the association at IMO
IMO’s work falls under three main regulatory areas: safety; environmental protection; and security. All are highly relevant to the International Marine Contractors Association (IMCA) and its members.
IMCA has long held consultative status at IMO. Through IMCA’s representative our members have a voice at IMO who engages in discussions and submits positioning papers on key areas that affect members and their businesses.
Each year there are about 25 weeks of meetings at IMO, during which legislation and regulations impacting the maritime world are drafted, discussed and reviewed/amended to reflect current industry practice, or to address a pressing regulatory need. The vast majority are relevant to IMCA and its members. In addition to attending relevant meetings IMCA is involved in producing industry standards on a variety of maritime issues. NGOs, like us, are the source of guidance and information for the 174 IMO Member States. Additionally, IMCA engages with key Member State representatives on behalf of its members and lobbies for support on key issues impacting the offshore sector.
Six key areas have been a priority for IMCA at IMO this year:
In May, IMCA ran a profile-raising photographic exhibition at the MEPC showcasing innovative vessels and working methods employed by members to improve the energy efficiency of their vessels and reduce their GHG emissions; this was viewed by Member States and also IMO Secretary-General, Kitack Lim.
The focus of our work has widened and really ramped up this year and 2020 will be no exception, as it marks the start of the crucial 2020-2030 decade during which IMO will be introducing mid-term measures to reduce the carbon intensity of the world fleet by at least 40%.
IMCA will continue to raise awareness with its members across all these areas and encourages them to become more involved; we need their input, their voice and crucially their examples to use in papers set before IMO.