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South Africa postpones position on open-loop scrubbers due to Covid-19 delays

10 Sep 2020

The South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA) on Monday (7 September) said it has postponed a decision on whether to ban the use of open-loop scrubbers in South African waters.

SAMSA, on 24-25 July 2019 at a South African National MARPOL workshop, said South Africa was required to commission and complete a study on the impact of open loop system wash water discharge on the marine environment.

The study was first commissioned in Q1 2020 with a local South African University and was due to be completed in Q2 2020.

However,  the imposed lockdown due to COVID-19, had negatively affected the delivery timeline of the study and resulted in South Africa not being  able to finalise its policy on the use of open loop scrubbers, based on scientific analysis. 

With the current restrictions, it is estimated that the study should be finalised by December 2020.

SAMSAadded that South Africa will review its position no later than December 2020 and should there be any amendments, an updated Marine Notice will be issued.

South Africa continues to accept all type approved scrubbers and will re-evaluate its position in December 2020.

A full copy of Samsa’s circular is available for download here.


Photo credit: John Chu
Published: 10 September, 2020

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