Fine on tanker in Germany for breaching open-loop scrubber ban

Authorities in Germany have imposed a record fine on a Marshall Islands-flagged tanker for breaching an open-loop scrubber ban in the Port of Hamburg.

On November 18th the local water police conducted a routine check of an unnamed vessel. It said that as a result, the ship had been fined €50,000 ($55,000) by the German Department of Environment and Energy.

The vessel was reported to have been equipped with an open-loop scrubber.

Under the relevant CDNI convention, the discharge of wash water from a scrubber into the river Elbe and in the Port of Hamburg is strictly prohibited. Ships equipped with open-loop scrubbers are required to switch to low sulphur fuel oil (defined within the EU as 0.10% sulphur cap).

It is only permitted to dispose of closed-loop wash water and solid scrubber waste at the port reception facilities in Hamburg upon payment of a fee.

The ship authorities said that the vessel already discharged 2,300 tons in the port water at the time of the inspection. A 43-year-old Philippine Chief Officer was being held responsible for the incident, according to the official announcement.