Collaborative Efforts

Ballast Water Technology Testing Aboard the Cape Washington

The commencement of ballast water technology testing aboard the Cape Washington is the culmination of many years of hard work. Becoming a partner in the Maritime Environmental Resource Center with the Maryland Port Administration and the University of Maryland Chesapeake Biological Laboratory will help to ensure the success of this project.

It is the mission of the Maritime Administration to support the marine transportation system and the maritime industry. The introduction of aquatic invasive species via ballast water has been an issue for decades. The Agency established the Ballast Water Initiative in order to assist the industry and other government agencies to move treatment technologies from the laboratory to ship-board application as rapidly as possible. Assets such as the Cape Washington and Cape Wrath, situated in a port like Baltimore, provide a stable shipboard environment with access to an operational ballast water system from which research may be conducted.

Thus, in 2006, these vessels had specific modifications made in order to facilitate technology testing. The goal was to modify the vessels to allow research with full access to the ballast water systems but without disrupting the engine room where space is limited. Basically, all the scientists needed to do was to drive the equipment on board to be hooked up. Thank you to Crowley, the Port Engineer, Mr. Mark Riggio, and the crew for their efforts in overseeing the shipboard modifications and doing work above and beyond normal duties.

There are many other people to thank when something so complex comes together, but it has become clear that an important person to recognize is Mr. Frank Hammons, Deputy Director for Port Development for the Maryland Port Administration. Mr. Hammons has understood the importance of this project, and the success of this research, for at least seven years, when testing on another Maritime Administration ship, the Cape May. Whatever success is met in this endeavor, and it will be great, much is owed to the vision and tenacity of Mr. Frank Hammons.

It is hoped that this research will provide a solution to this complex issue, and look forward to continuing the cooperative commitment with the Maryland Port Administration, the University of Maryland, and Congressman Cummings.

To find out more, click here.

Ballast Water Technology Testing In the Great Lakes

The Great Ships Initiative (GSI) is a collaborative effort to end the problem of ship mediated introductions of invasive species in the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway system through independent research and demonstration of environmental technology, financial incentives, and consistent basin-wide harbor monitoring. With the help of the Maritime Administration, the GSI has established a land-based Research, Development and Technology Evaluation (RDTE) facility in Superior, Wisconsin, to provide intensive testing services to vendors of ballast treatment of prospects.

To find out more, click here.

Ballast Water Technology Testing on the Training Ship Golden Bear

The Maritime Administration teamed with the California Maritime Academy, University of Washington, and The Glosten Associates and submitted a proposal to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for funds to convert the California Maritime Academy training ship Golden Bear into a test platform similar to the Chesapeake setup. Funding was approved, and ship conversion anticipated sometime in fiscal year 2009.

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