Great Lakes Seaway Ballast Water Working Group releases ballast water management report

9th Coast Guard District NewsCLEVELAND — The Great Lakes Ballast Water Working Group (BWWG) released Friday its 2011 Summary of Great Lakes Seaway Ballast Water Management report.

Click here to view or download the 2011 summary report.

The BWWG is comprised of representatives of the U. S. Coast Guard, Transport Canada – Marine Safety, the Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation, and the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation.

Preventing the introduction of aquatic invasive species into the Great Lakes through stricter ballast water standards and a comprehensive enforcement policy is a top priority for all the members of this working group.

In 2011, 100% of ships bound for the Great Lakes via the St. Lawrence Seaway from outside the Exclusive Economic Zone received a ballast tank exam.  A total of 7,203 ballast tanks during 396 vessel transits were assessed. Vessels that did not exchange their ballast water or flush their ballast tanks were required to either retain the ballast water and residuals on board, treat the ballast water in an environmentally sound and approved manner, or return to sea to conduct a ballast water exchange.

This is the second consecutive year that agencies that comprise the BWWG ensured the examination of 100% of ballast tanks entering the Great Lakes via the St. Lawrence Seaway. In February 2011, the BWWG released its 2010 summary report. Click here to learn more.

The BWWG anticipates continued high ship compliance rates for the 2012 navigation season.

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