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Marine Exhaust emissions - Exhaust gases from engines and boilers

Ships exhaust emissions control : Exhaust gases from engines and boilers contain atmospheric pollutants which are principally nitrogen oxides (NOX), sulphur oxides (SOX), carbon oxides and unburnt hydrocarbon particulates. These various pollutants contribute to smog (smoke+fog) and acid rain, and carbon oxides contribute to the greenhouse effect, which is increasing global temperatures.

The IMO Marine Environment Protection Committee is considering ways to reduce the pollutants in exhaust emissions. The SOX content of emission may be reduced by either a reduction of the sulphur content in fuels or an exhaust gas treatment system. New engine technology may reduce NOX formation and thus emissions, while carbon oxides can be reduced by good plant maintenance.

Selective Catalytic Reduction Systems are in use on some vessels, which are said to reduce NOX emissions by 90 per cent and carbon oxides by 80 per cent. The equipment has been successfully operated on new buildings and more recently as a retrofit on existing ships.

Major research initiatives are underway by engine builders, and classification societies, in cooperation with shipowners, in order to obtain data regarding achievable targets and suitable methods of measurement. This data will enable IMO and National Authorities to develop realistic legislation with which owners can readily comply on new and existing vessels.

You should be aware that under various regulations applicable to the area your vessel is in, it may be an offence to emit dark smoke. The Master should therefore request appropriate detailed information from the local agent concerning the area emission regulations and pass the information to the Chief Engineer.

Emissions of smoke, soot and exhaust gases such as COx, NOx and SOx (Carbon, nitrogen and sulphur) is minimised by controlled running, systematic maintenance and inspection routines of machinery, boilers and funnel. The emissions of exhaust gases contribute to pollution and environmental problems such as acidification and global warming. All to focus on control and reduction of the emission of these harmful gases.

Some of the ships are equipped with funnel filters to prevent large emissions from occurring. Special care shall be exercised during port stays and when starting main and auxiliary engines and lighting boilers.

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