Petty Officer 2nd Class Travis Kelly, Marine Safety Detachment Massena worked with a crewmember to get a sample of ballast water from the motor vessel Eider, in Montreal, June 3, 2008. (Photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class William B. Mitchell)

U.S. Coast Guard Calls for Industry Proposals for BWMS Testing

The U.S. Coast Guard has released a draft policy letter on the implementation of new nonviable-organism testing protocols for ballast water management systems, as required by the passage of the Vessel Incidental Discharge Act (VIDA).

The “nonviable” method is based on a determination of whether aquatic organisms in ballast water can reproduce after treatment, and it is already used to satisfy IMO standards for BWMS performance worldwide. The unique U.S. Coast Guard standard – called “vital stain” – requires test labs to certify that a BWMS renders organisms incapable of visible movement after treatment (and therefore “dead”). Some critics of the Coast Guard standard maintained that non-moving was not necessarily equivalent to non-living; others have suggested that reproductive viability is a better measurement of an organism’s invasive potential.

Read more at Maritime Executive

The Government Technology & Services Coalition's Homeland Security Today (HSToday) is the premier news and information resource for the homeland security community, dedicated to elevating the discussions and insights that can support a safe and secure nation. A non-profit magazine and media platform, HSToday provides readers with the whole story, placing facts and comments in context to inform debate and drive realistic solutions to some of the nation’s most vexing security challenges.

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