International Convention for the Control and Management of Ships' Ballast Water and Sediments (BWM Convention) was adopted by IMO 13 February 2004.
"Ballast Water“ means water with its suspended matter taken on board a ship to control trim, list, draught, stability or stresses of the ship.
While ballast water is essential for safe and efficient modern shipping operations, it may pose serious ecological, economic and health problems due to the multitude of marine species carried in ships’ ballast water. These include bacteria, microbes, small invertebrates, eggs, cysts and larvae of various species. The transferred species may survive to establish a reproductive population in the host environment, becoming invasive, out-competing native species and multiplying into pest proportions.
The spread of invasive species is now recognized as one of the greatest threats to the ecological and the economic well being of the planet. These species are causing enormous damage to biodiversity and the valuable natural riches of the earth upon which we depend. Direct and indirect health effects are becoming increasingly serious and the damage to the environment is often irreversible.
The Convention requires all ships to implement a Ballast Water Management Plan. All ships have to carry a Ballast water record book and are required to carry out ballast water management procedures to a given standard. Parties to the Convention are given the option to take additional measures which are subject to criteria set out in the Convention and to IMO guidelines.
IBICON offers you services for the development of a Ship's Ballast Water Management Plan (BWMP).