Messi or Ronaldo? Scrubbers or LNG?

Everyone has their own personal preference and many have very strong opinions for or against one or the other. What became clear at the recent FIFA World Cup was that perhaps the Messi or Ronaldo debate is now a matter for historians (who was the greatest?), while the future of footballing greatness may lie elsewhere. Similarly there are those who would argue that both scrubbers and LNG are simply perpetuating the use of fossil fuels and that the real long-term future of ship propulsion lies elsewhere. It’s unlikely this debate will be settled any time soon.

In the same week that the world cup was building up to France’s glorious victory last Sunday, the intersessional working group (ISWG) meeting of the Sub-Committee on Pollution Prevention and Response (PPR) was meeting at the IMO headquarters in London. It was a very useful meeting which yielded some clear direction and resolution in a few areas. As an industry association we occasionally find ourselves in a situation where some of our members hold diametrically opposed views and/or contrary opinions on various matters.

Therefore, in what some have called a post-Truth society, we find it important to distinguish between matters of fact and opinions. It is inevitable that our members will occasionally have different opinions and also biases on important matters. However, the facts, once clearly established, must be presented and accepted as the facts regardless of which side of the debate one favours.

This is particularly important when it comes to seafarer and vessel safety. It was therefore a very welcome development that the confusion about whether the existing ISO 8217 marine fuel quality standard will cover fuel blends produced to meet the 0.5% sulphur limit has, hopefully, been cleared up at last week’s meeting at the International Maritime Organization.

Concerns about the safety of fuel blends complying with the upcoming 0.50% sulphur limit were on the agenda for the working group meeting, which was tasked with developing guidelines to support the consistent implementation of the 2020 sulphur limit.

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