The United Nations had decided to phase out single-hull oil tankers
In a recently-published survey entitled "Destination Unknown: European single-hull oil tankers
. No place to go", Greenpeace notes that over 2,000 oil tankers are to be scrapped within the next five years.
The aim there is "to ban as soon as possible single-hull oil tankers
Safety at sea has already been discussed between the EU and Russia, mainly with a view to forging an alliance with the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) and pushing through European plans, such as ditching single-hull oil tankers
and port inspections.
In addition, more stringent quality criteria must be met by the recognised organisations, including the obligation to follow certain procedures when a ship changes class, such as the transmission of the complete history file of the ship to the new classification society (proposal for a Directive amending Directive 94/57/EC on classification societies).Banning single-hull tankers.Finally, the Commission wants to generalise the ban on single-hull oil tankers
according to a timetable similar to that applied in the United States (2005, 2010 and 2015, depending on tonnage).
The International Maritime Organisation (IMO) will spend from December 1 to 5 considering the EU plan for the globalisation of measures it adopted last July to ensure an accelerated phase-out of single-hull oil tankers
and a ban on single-hull vessels being used to carry heavy grades of oil (Regulation 417/2002, amended in July 2003, applied last October 21).
The Commission intends to simplify the procedure for suspending or withdrawing its agreement with the classification societies, which should bear full responsibility in the event of an incident.The third measure proposes to gradually phase out all single-hull oil tankers
on a time-scale along the lines of the US plan - 2005, 2010 and 2015, according to their tonnage.Further proposals.Later this year, the Commission will be tabling more complex, and more long-term-oriented proposals.
In essence, the text calls for Category 3 single-hull oil tankers
On an official visit to Algeria from February 6 to 9, Ms de Palacio urged the Algerian authorities to lend their co-operation to the harmonised application of measures to ban the transport of heavy fuel oil in single-hull oil tankers
. She also invited Algeria to participate in the work of the brand new European Maritime Safety Agency.
The European Commission tabled a draft Regulation towards this end on December 20 (see European Report 2734) and during the December 5/6 Council meeting, EU Ministers agreed to ban single-hull oil tankers
from carrying heavy grades of oil (heavy fuel oil, tar, bitumen, heavy crude oil).
The CAS is an additional reinforced inspection scheme specifically developed to detect structural weaknesses of single-hull oil tankers
. It is carried out, every two and a half years by the flag state and by classification societies acting on their behalf.
The European Commission is therefore expected to propose that the Copenhagen European Council approve implementation of an agreement between maritime administrations (a procedure that has the advantage of avoiding the delays inherent to the legislative process) to refuse access to single-hull oil tankers
transporting heavy fuel oil in their ports, terminals and other berthing points.