Marine Technology Reporter Blogs - invassive

Preventing Ballast Water Invasive Species Propagation

July 13, 2013

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Ballast water is used to stabilize ships at sea, being pumped-in to weigh down a ship for safe navigational conditions when the ships hull is not filled with cargo for a voyage. Controlling the amount of ballast water embarked helps to reduce stress on the hull while providing transverse stability when underway. The correct use of ballast also makes ship propulsion more efficient and increases maneuverability. By correctly controlling the amount and location of ballast within the hull an officer can compensate for weight lost due to fuel and water consumption during a voyage, always maintaining optimum stability. Just by reading the paragraph above it becomes clear to any landlubber that ballast water is vital for safe ship operations.

Ship-borne Invasive Species

June 15, 2013

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Scientists have developed the first global model that analyses the routes taken by marine invasive species. The researchers examined the movements of cargo ships around the world to identify the hot spots where these aquatic aliens might thrive. Marine species are taken in with ballast water on freighters and wreak havoc in new locations, potentially driving native species to extinction. The research was published in the Journal Ecology Letters. As Brazil is experiencing a great increase in shipping, mostly due to the ongoing O&G boom spearheaded by huge deepwater pre-salt reservoirs recently being uncorked, this study can be considered of particular importance for Brazilian environmental agencies such as IBAMA…