Maritime Administration, American Bureau of Shipping Sign Research Agreement

NEW YORK—Maritime Administrator Sean T. Connaughton and Robert D. Somerville, Chairman and CEO of the American Bureau of Shipping, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to coordinate research efforts on major marine transportation environmental issues and to share information to promote the development of a vital and environmentally responsible merchant marine.

ABS and the Maritime Administration have agreed to coordinate portions of their respective maritime environmental research efforts undertaken for the public good, undertake to coordinate areas of research, avoid duplication of effort, and to achieve research synergies, all to promote the development of a vital and environmentally responsible maritime industry. The products of the collaborative research conducted within the scope of this agreement will be disseminated as widely as possible to the public through the joint and separate means available to the Parties.

“Marine transportation is of vital importance to the United States of America and the entire world and its future is Green,” said Connaughton. “In order to be successful, we need to be collaborating and cooperating on research to address environmental issues currently impacting our industry and be able to anticipate future issues.”

Research efforts expected to be undertaken within the scope of this agreement shall focus on important maritime environmental issues such as port and vessel air emissions, invasive species associated with ballast water or hull biofouling, vessel impact on climate change and greenhouse gases, ship generated noise, environmental impact and energy efficiency use of alternative fuels in maritime settings, environmental impacts of vessel operations on the Arctic and Antarctic Oceans, and vessel waste management programs. In addition to these areas, researchers from the Maritime Administration and ABS will work together to find areas for future collaborative research.

The American Bureau of Shipping is one of the leading classification societies in the world; it promotes the security of life, property and the natural environment primarily through the development and verification of standards for the design, construction and operational maintenance of marine-related facilities.

The Maritime Administration promotes the use of waterborne transportation and strengthens the U.S. marine transportation system to meet the economic, environmental and security needs of the Nation.

The Maritime Administration and ABS have developed expertise in many of the areas affecting maritime transportation and commerce and are currently engaged in actively searching for solutions to the most important challenges in the industry.

 Contact: Shannon Russell (202)-366-5807

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