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Hong Kong: 0.5% sulphur directive for marine fuel to take effect

31 Oct 2018

Manifold Times: The below regulation is a stricter version of Hong Kong’s Air Pollution Control Regulation (Cap 311AA) that requires OGVs to switch to compliant fuel while berthing in Hong Kong. Cap 311AA will be replaced by the new regulation (Cap 311AB) from January 1 next year.

The Hong Kong Legislative Council has recently approved the Air Pollution Control (Fuel for Vessels) Regulation (Cap 311AB), according to the Environmental Protection Department (EPD).

The new Cap 311AB regulation requires ocean-going vessels (OGVs) using heavy fuel oil to switch to compliant fuel before entering Hong Kong waters from January 1, 2019.

An OGV will need to record the particulars of the fuel switch operations in its log book during the times when the vessel enters and exits the waters of Hong Kong; the ship log book and bunker delivery notes must be kept on board for a period of three years.

Compliant fuel required by the Cap 311AB regulation includes low-sulphur marine fuel with sulphur content not exceeding 0.5%, liquefied natural gas (LNG) or any other fuel approved by the Director of Environmental Protection.

If a vessel uses emission reduction technology that can achieve the same or less emission of sulphur dioxide when compared with using low-sulphur marine fuel, it may be exempted from using compliant fuel.

“It is anticipated that implementing the Regulation will reduce the emissions of sulphur dioxide and respirable suspended particulates from OGVs by about 76% and 71% respectively in 2020 as compared with 2016 emission levels,” said a EPD spokesman.

“This will help improve air quality and reduce health risks of the population. The implementation of the Regulation would also enhance regional collaboration with the Mainland on the establishment of a domestic marine emission control area in the Pearl River Delta.”

When the Cap 311AB regulation comes into effect, the master and owner concerned of any vessel using non-compliant fuel within the waters of Hong Kong will be liable to a maximum fine of $200,000 and imprisonment for six months.

Shipmasters and ship owners of OGVs who fail to record or keep the required particulars will also be liable to a maximum fine of $50,000 and imprisonment for three months. 

Related: Hong Kong mulls stricter maritime air emissions regulation

Published: 31 October, 2018

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