Harmful ships’ paint systems outlawed as international convention enters into force
An international convention banning the use of organotins and other harmful substances in anti-fouling paints applied on ships' hulls enters into force on 17 September 2008.
The International Convention on the Control of Harmful Anti-Fouling Systems on Ships (AFS Convention) was adopted on 5 October 2001 by IMO and the terms for its entry into force (ratification by 25 States representing 25 per cent of the world's merchant shipping tonnage) were reached last year. The Convention has, to date, been ratified by 34 States, with a combined 52.81 per cent of world merchant shipping tonnage.
Under the Convention, ships are not permitted to apply or re-apply organotin compounds which act as biocides in their anti-fouling systems; ships either shall not carry such compounds on their hulls or external parts or surface or, in the case of ships that already carry such compounds on their hulls, will have to apply a coating that forms a barrier to prevent them leaching from the underlying non-compliant anti-fouling systems.
The Convention also establishes a mechanism to evaluate and assess other anti-fouling systems and prevent the potential future use of other harmful substances in these systems.
The Convention applies to ships flying the flag of a Party to the Convention, as well as ships not entitled to fly their flag but which operate under their authority, and to all ships that enter a port, shipyard or offshore terminal of a Party. It applies to all ships, including fixed or floating platforms, floating storage units (FSUs) and floating production storage and off-loading units (FPSOs).
Briefing 40, 16 September 2008For further information please contact:
Lee Adamson, Head, Public Information Services on 020 7587 3153 (firstname.lastname@example.org) or
Natasha Brown, External Relations Officer on 020 7587 3274 (email@example.com).