The Ballast Water Treatment Convention is what governs the responsibility of the shipping industry, specifically how ships traveling through international waters treat their ballast water. The Ballast Water Treatment Convention (BWTC) established new standards effective September 2017 to address this issue which is considered one of the greatest threats to our planet’s oceans. The BWTC is enforced by the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC), a subsidiary of the International Maritime Organization (IMO).
According to the most recent BWTC, all ships must be equipped with an effective ballast water treatment system that is approved by the United States Coast Guard (USCG).
The Threat of Ships’ Ballast Water
When ships sail through international waters they hold ocean water in their ballast for balance depending on the weight of their cargo. When delivering cargo in a foreign port, they will take on ballast water to compensate for the loss of weight and provide balance when sailing to their next destination. When picking up cargo in one port, they may release their ballast water to allow for the additional weight.
By releasing oceanic water into a foreign port, the ships’ ballast water also releases aquatic organisms which invade the foreign port, often with catastrophic consequences. Lifeforms such as mussels, clams, jellyfish, crabs, and many microorganisms including viruses and bacteria which are naked to the human eye invade foreign waters without the safeguard of their natural predators from their home environment. This allows the invading species to multiply, jeopardizing the health and wellness of fish and aquatic lifeforms and even threatens the health of human life inland.
Invading foreign mussels have nearly shut down dams and power plants when allowed to multiply uncontrollably, causing a great risk to the people living in these areas. Jellyfish have been known to destroy fishing industries when invading foreign ports and without their natural predators can be nearly impossible to eradicate.
There is no question that the terms of the new BWTC are established to protect the environment, the sustainability of our world’s oceans and the people that live near these ports that depend upon the fishing industry for their livelihood.
LightSources Provides Ballast Water Treatment Systems with USCG Approval
The LightSources Group consists of the leading high-tech designers of fluorescent and UV lamps designed to harness powerful UVC radiation which quickly and effectively purifies and sterilizes water, air and surfaces. Our UVC germicidal lamps are utilized and water purification systems around the globe, providing clean and safe drinking water and improving the environment with healthy, clean and sterilized water. UVC radiation successfully eradicates viruses and bacteria eliminating the risk of foreign invading species taking hold in a new port.
LightSources is dedicated to bringing innovative lamps and lighting solutions to the UVC germicidal industry, with patented products and proprietary technology based on continual research and development. Our Low Pressure (LP) Amalgam lamps provide a compact footprint which is convenient in the tight spaces of the ships ballast area and provides 30 to 35% increased efficiency over comparable lamps. Our Medium Pressure (MPUV) germicidal lamps provide an even more compact footprint which is ideal on smaller ships. We utilize proprietary LongLife™ technology designed for optimum germicidal effectiveness with the most effective wavelength at 254 nanometer (nm).
The LightSources Group is recognized as a leading global supplier of UVC germicidal solutions, improving air and water quality around the globe. Contact us today to speak with an experienced lighting engineer regarding our superior UVC germicidal lamps for ballast water treatment systems.