International Code of Safety for Gas-Fuelled Ships

Logistics experts greatly understand the importance of switching to alternative fuels for international shipping. Current fuel sources are getting costly and future regulations could provide an incredible obstacle. And it is not just regulations from Governments that could be restrictive, but also new rules from ports. For example, three ports in the Northwest (Seattle, Tacoma and Metro Vancouver), will implement new rules to cut diesel emissions by as much as 75% for each ton of cargo. The overall goal is of course to reduce the greenhouse gases, which in turn will save lives and save the environment. That is why many freight carriers are switching to alternative fuels. It also helps that some of these fuels might be less expensive, which in turn could mean different ocean freight shipping rates.

Now that carriers around the globe realize the need for alternative fuel, the concern of safety for vessels that operate with new fuels, like natural gas, is the big issue in the shipping industry. The International Maritime Organization (IMO) is taking the lead on this crucial subject. This includes the design and implementation of an International Code for Safety of Gas-Fuelled Ships (IGF). These laws regulate vessels with natural gas, an alternative fuel, and the rules will be finalized by 2014. The safety issues in the IGF involved many safety different topics such as dealing with fires and the structure of the vessel. Freight forwarders are continuing to monitor the situation and the impact on shipping that will most certainly follow in 2014.