Sarvin agent pays TWD1.5m fine for illegal waste discharge

The local shipping agent for Iranian container ship Sarvin (IMO 9209348) has paid a fine of TWD1.5m (US$52,150) to the local Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) to cover a penalty for the illegal discharge of waste fuel off the coast of Kaohsiung, Taiwan in October 2017.

An EU Sentinel-1 satellite captured images of the ship off the coast of Kaohsiung early on October 9th last year, apparently discharging waste fuel. The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) was asked to help interpret the image. The Ministry of Transportation and Communications’ Harbour and Marine Technology Centre also helped identify the ship through AIS.

The ship appears to have discharged about five tonnes of waste oil over a period of at least two or three hours, leaving a pollution track almost 60km in length.

However, the pollutants were carried away by fast-moving currents and evaporated. The EPA fined the ship’s owner TWD1.5m for contravening Article 29 of the Marine Pollution Control Act, but it proved hard to track down the owner.

Eventually the Taiwanese agent for the ship handed over the cheque at a meeting in Kaohsiung with the EPA and other officials. The ship’s corporate executives will also be required to attend an eight-hour session on protecting the environment.

2000-built, Iran-flagged, 36,014 gt Sarvin is owned by Oghiaanous Khoroushan Shipping care of manager Rahbaran Omid Darya Ship Management Co  of Tehran, Iran.