newsrel — Shipper fined $130K for violating clean air regulation

Posted: 03 Mar 2016 11:44:25

March 3, 2016


CONTACT: Karen Caesar (916) 322-2990

Shipper fined $130K for violating clean air regulation

Rule requires ocean-going vessels to use cleaner diesel off

California coast

SACRAMENTO – The California Air Resources Board has fined the

China Navigation Co. Pte. Ltd. $129,500 for failure to switch its

engines over from heavy diesel “bunker” fuel to cleaner,

low-sulfur fuel when close to the California coast, as required

by state law.  CARB’s Ocean-Going Vessel Fuel regulation is a

critical part of California’s plan to attain air quality

standards in Southern California and across the state.

On December 28, 2012, an ARB inspector found that the vessel

Chenan, managed by the China Navigation Co. Pte. Ltd., operated

within Regulated California Waters (i.e. 24 miles or less from

the coast) on noncompliant heavy fuel oil on 12 separate days

(four voyages) between August 5 and December 28, 2012, while en

route to and departing from the Port of Los Angeles.


“Ships using heavy diesel fuels are a significant contributor to

California’s air quality problems, even in communities located

far from our coast” said ARB Enforcement Division Chief Todd Sax.

“That’s why we check vessels nearly every day to ensure that

they are compliant with our strict clean air laws.  When we

identify a violation, we educate the fleet owner and crew on how

to comply with our requirements, and we assess penalties as a

deterrent to future noncompliance.”

The China Navigation Co. Pte. Ltd. took prompt action after being

notified of these violations and cooperated with the

investigation. In addition to paying a fine, the company agreed

to comply with all fuel switchover requirements and to keep

accurate records going forward.

The Air Resources Board conducts an estimated 800 to 1,000 ship

inspections each year, checking for proper fuel usage,

record-keeping and other compliance requirements.  Part of the

inspection involves sampling each vessel’s fuel, and analyzing

the fuel sample for compliance with ARB fuel sulfur requirements.

The Ocean Going Vessel Fuels Regulation, adopted in 2008,

eliminates 15 tons of diesel exhaust – a known carcinogen – daily

from ocean-going vessels, and is considered a vital tool in

helping to reduce cancer rates and premature deaths associated

with living near the state’s busy ports and trade corridors.

Diesel exhaust contains a variety of harmful gases and over 40

other known cancer-causing compounds. In 1998, California

identified diesel particulate matter as a toxic air contaminant

based on its potential to cause cancer, premature death and other

health problems.