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In 2004, the IMO adopted a new “Convention for the Control and Management of Ship’s Ballast Water and Sediments”. The purpose of this new convention was to control the harmful effects of unwanted or invasive species being transported in ships’ ballast water.

After a review of the different Ballast Water Treatment Systems (BWTS), Oldendorff Carriers has decided to partner with ERMA FIRST. Oldendorff Carriers made a review of the approved BWTS including visiting some manufacturing facilities, the review included; regulation compliance, capital cost, energy requirements, anticipated operating costs, space requirements, simplicity to manage and availability.

ERMA FIRST is headquartered in Greece; they impressed Oldendorff Carriers with their professional method of addressing our questions and concerns. The ERMA FIRST BWTS FIT is USCG type approved and IMO approved for nearly all water types. Their BWTS is simple, flexible, and suitable for small and large ballast-pump capacities. It also has a small footprint and a low power consumption.

During ballasting, the water goes through the filter, where organisms and sediment (with a diameter larger than 40 microns) are separated and further discharged overboard. The filtered water enters the Electrolytic Cell. Naturally, from the chlorides of the water, free chlorine is produced through the electrolysis process at a very low concentration (around 4-6 mg/L). The treated water then, enters the ballast tanks. During de-ballasting, the system will only monitor the residual oxidants and will further intervene if necessary. The main stages of the system (filtration and disinfection) are bypassed.

Niklas Richter, Project Manager of the Oldendorff Carriers Green Ships Department commented, “We have had an internal task force working on BWTS for two years, during this time we have thoroughly investigated many systems, particularly those with US Coast Guard approval. We were very impressed with the professionalism of ERMA FIRST and are very pleased to partner with them on the BWTS project. Although the fitting of BWTS is not yet compulsory, we plan to fit a trial ERMA FIRST system in July 2018 and start fitting many of our owned vessels in 2019 to have time to train and implement the system before vessels are required to comply with the regulations.”

Konstantinos Stampedakis, ERMA FIRST Managing Director commented, ‘Working with such a professional and high quality shipping company such as Oldendorff Carriers, promoted the quality of our equipment and services. We have undertaken a great challenge which we will fulfill at the most professional and efficient way.

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