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GREEK CRUISE OPERATOR FINED FOR EMISSIONS VIOLATION

Friday, May 17, 2019  (Comments: 2)

Greek operator Global Cruise Lines has received a notice of a violation fine of NOK 700,000 following the cruiesehip Magellan’s violation of fuel sulphur limits in the world heritage fjords. The notice is the first to be issued following the March 2019 entry into force of new environmental requirements for emissions in the fjords Nærøyfjord, Aurlandsfjord, Geirangerfjord, Sunnylvsfjord and Tafjord.

On 16 April, the NMA received notes of concern about smoke emissions from the Bahamas-registered cruise ship the Magellan, which was berthed in Flåm. These were followed up by an inspection onboard when the ship arrived at Geiranger the next day. The NMA surveyors measured the sulphur content of the ship’s fuel to be 0.17 %. In the world heritage fjords, the maximum allowed sulphur content is 0.10 %.

Tracking of the vessel's AIS signal shows that the vessel made ports of call at both Eidfjord and Flåm in the days preceding the port of call at Geiranger. Both of these ports are located within the North Sea ECA. The ship came to Eidfjord from Tilbury in the UK, where it left port on 13 April.

“Our documentation shows that the ships entered two world heritage fjords with sulphur values far beyond the legal limit values,” said Bjørn Pedersen, Head of Department of Legislation and International Relations in the NMA.

The extent of the violation is significant in this case, where a ship has sailed a considerable distance within the emission control area using a fuel with an excessive sulphur content. Furthermore, as an aggravating factor, emphasis is put on the fact that the new rules concerning the world heritage fjords were violated. Overall, this implies that violation fines at a historic high level are imposed on the company, said the NMA in a press statement.

The NMA has a clear expectation that the new legislation will be complied with. Alf Tore Sørheim, Head of Department of Operative Supervision, said: “We will have an increased presence in the world heritage fjords in the months to come, and our focus will be on making sure that the new environmental requirements are met.”

“The NMA has made efforts to ensure safe and effective controls of sulphur emissions. Our surveyors are equipped with handheld devices that provide an immediate indication of whether the vessel satisfies the requirements or not. Moreover, we have invested in sensors which can be attached to a drone to detect sulphurous exhaust gases,” he added.

Reader Comments (2)

Norway, now the richest country in the world. It can afford to use such drones with such sensors. It also can afford to let go of the revenues - sea way revenues, port stay revenues and tourism revenues.

By Anup Kumar Roy on Monday, May 20, 2019

The fine should have been 10 times as much. Shipowners never seem to learn .

By cjones on Monday, May 20, 2019

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