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News: Additional fuel analysis to be conducted starting in May 2021 for California Ocean-Going Vessel Fuel Regulation

05 March 2021

Members may recall the club’s recent update on the requirements for complying with the California Ocean-Going Vessel (OGV) Fuel Regulation. The OGV Fuel Regulation requires the use of marine distillate grade fuel (marine gas oil or marine diesel oil) with a maximum sulfur level of 0.1% while operating within 24 nautical miles of the California coast. Compliance via scrubbers is not allowed. Please see the attachment box for the previous news item.

The California Air Resources Board (CARB) staff has announced that, starting in May 2021, it will commence additional analysis of fuel samples taken during the inspection of ocean-going ships to verify compliance with the local environmental regulations.

While ships’ fuel may in fact meet the sulphur limits of both International and California regulations, the fuel may still fail to meet the standards for distillate grade fuel, as required by California law. According to studies, the use of distillate fuel vs. lower sulphur residual grade fuel considerably reduces the formation of directly emitted particulate from diesel engines. CARB staff will therefore perform additional analysis of the collected fuel samples in accordance with ISO 8217 which will be used to determine whether the fuel meets the specifications of distillate grade fuel.

Members are reminded of the importance of complying with International, national and California fuel regulations to avoid significant fines from authorities.

If members have any questions or feedback on the above, please reach out to the undersigned or your usual contact at the club. For more information about the CARB regulations click here.