Home » Breaking News, Maritime, Press Releases » Sewage treatment facility a must for PH ships

Domestic ships at Manila North Harbor

The Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) is requiring Philippine-registered ships to have an adequate sewage treatment plant (STP) and/or holding tank in compliance with the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL).

Annex IV of MARPOL 73/78, to which the Philippines is a state party, contains the set regulations on the discharge of sewage into the sea from ships, including provisions and requirements on the ships’ equipment and systems that control sewage discharge, on port reception facilities for sewage, and on survey and certification, MARINA said in a statement. Annex IV entered into force in 2013.

An STP refers to a facility that treats sewage on a ship before it is discharged into the sea, while the holding tank is used to collect and store sewage.

To implement Annex IV, MARINA last April 23 signed Memorandum Circular (MC) No. SR-2020-02, which provides the rules on the construction of the tank and installation of equipment for the collection, storage and treatment of sewage on ships.

MARINA said the policy aims to control all sources of marine pollution and prevent pollution of the sea from dumping of wastes.

MC SR-2020-02 applies to all persons, corporations, partnerships, firms and entities acquiring or operating ships of 400 gross tonnage and above and ships below 400 gross tonnage and certified to carry more than 15 persons including the crew.

Passenger bancas and service boats with travel time of less than three hours and carrying 15 passengers and below as well as non-propelled barge are exempt.

Based on MC SR-2020-02, all Philippine-registered ships for construction should submit to MARINA the installation plan for the holding tank and/or STP, including the discharge pipeline incorporated into the Engine Room Arrangement Plan and Piping Plan for verification and approval.

All existing ships without holding tank, comminuting/disinfecting system, and/or STP should also comply with MC SR-2020-02 within the next dry-docking period. They must also submit to MARINA and/or their MARINA-assessed recognized organizations the modified Engine Room Arrangement Plan incorporating the holding tank and/or STP and discharge pipeline plans, for approval, verification and issuance of the Safety Construction Certificate.

In case ship stability is affected by these fittings, a re-inclining experiment test, re-calculation of freeboard and other related issuances will be required by MARINA.

All ships to be imported must also have a holding tank, comminuting/disinfecting system and/or STP in compliance with Annex IV, and should have a valid International Sewage Pollution Prevention (ISPP) Certificate.

All existing ships with holding tank and/or STP will be required to submit to MARINA and/or their recognized organizations the schematic diagram of the holding tank and/or STP, including the discharge pipeline for verification and approval.

MARINA under MC SR-2020-02 will undertake periodic random inspection of Philippine-registered ships calling any of the country’s ports to ensure compliance. Philippine-registered ships trading overseas will also be subject to survey/inspection under the oversight function of MARINA.

Ships covered by MC SR-2020-02 operating without an STP or holding tank approved by MARINA will be subject to the following fines and penalties:

  • 50 GT or less: P50,000 plus suspension and/or cancellation of Authority to Operate
  • Over 50 GT to 500 GT: P100,000 plus suspension and/or cancellation of Authority to Operate
  • Above 500 GT to 1,500 GT: P150,000 plus suspension and/or cancellation of Authority to Operate
  • Above 1,500 GT: P200,000 plus suspension and/or cancellation of Authority to Operate

All fined ships will not be able to sail until they comply. Other related fines and penalties under MC 2015-07 (Rules and Regulations for the Construction, Conversion, Alteration, Modification, Re-Building of Philippine-Registered Domestic Ships) may also be imposed. – Roumina Pablo

No comments yet... Be the first to leave a reply!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

eighteen − 9 =