Disruption from new fuel and emission regulations is an “inevitable” challenge that the global maritime industry must prepare for, according to an industry figure.
Stuart Edmonston, loss prevention director at UK P&I Club, recently weighed in on several issues that the marine industry is facing next year – including new upcoming regulations from the International Marine Organisation (IMO) and global shipping’s embrace of automation.
“From a loss prevention perspective, the most obvious discussion point for 2020 is the impending roll-out of new IMO fuel and emissions regulations, which will bring unique challenges in terms of compliance, enforcement, and managing the new type of fuel on board,” he said. “The industry must be prepared for not just the initial and inevitable disruption that IMO 2020 will cause but the related elevation in threats, such as blackouts and associated engine breakdowns. Preventive action implementation alongside a regular schedule of monitoring is vital to mitigate and control such risks and the associated losses.”
Edmonston also expects new technological advancements in shipboard processes, machineries, and equipment as shipping continues to embrace automation.
“This will create newer training requirements in 2020 and beyond, as well as crew familiarity issues,” he said. “As we move towards an increasingly digital and automated future, it’s more vital than ever to attract technologically innovative people to the sector, while retaining the current pool of motivated, capable and knowledgeable people.
To prepare for the challenges of the coming year, Edmonston said that the sector needs to improve “cross-industry collaboration.”
“For example, much insight can be gained by sharing and analysing incidents through seminars, office and crew interactions, while safety can greatly improve with increased dialogue between aviation, classification societies and P&I Clubs,” he said.