1st Global Conference on Biofouling Management for Maritime Industries

  • 22/09/2021
  • 23/09/2021
  • Online
  • events@imarest.org

BIMCO's Manager, Marine Environment Bev Mackenzie will be co-chair of the conference and will be moderating two sessions. BIMCO's Manager, Maritime Safety & Security Ashok Srinivasan will be speaking in the session entitled “Biofouling management: Assessment of method".

About the IMarEST’s 1st Global Conference on Biofouling Management for Maritime Industries

The event will bring together specialists from across this multidisciplinary and multisectoral field to support the development of a practical and sustainable path forward for maritime industries to achieve outcomes that will better protect the global maritime environment.

The settlement and growth of biofouling species on surfaces immersed in the sea, whether they are ship hulls, drilling rigs, or aquaculture nets, can compromise operational performance as well as enabling the movement of marine species along coasts or across seas. Although a phenomenon that has happened since mariners first set sail, the management of biofouling in, and by, maritime industries has become a subject of increasing global interest because of the need to reduce the GHG emissions for shipping, the need for increased seafood production through aquaculture, and concerns on the spread of invasive marine species.

However, the path forward is not a straight road. Keeping immersed surfaces free of biofouling for extended periods mostly means applying a coating that continually releases biocide to prevent the attachment of biofouling organisms, and/or regular in-water cleaning to remove and growth that has attached. But do these biocides and coatings have adverse environmental impacts? And what is the fate and effects of in-water cleaning waste? The impacts of species spread as biofouling are also far from clear. Do introduced marine biofouling species reduce local biodiversity, or increase it by occupying disturbed and modified environments? And how do regulations imposed to protect states against the perceived invasive marine species threat impact on industries?

The 1st Global Conference on Biofouling Management for Maritime Industries is a forum for the discussion of these and other issues to support the development of a practical and sustainable path forward for maritime industries to achieve outcomes that will better protect the global maritime environment.


BIMCO's Bev Mackenzie will be co-chair of the conference and will be moderating two sessions. Session 2 - Management of vessel biofouling: Now and into the future (Wednesday 22 September 07:30 to 0900 GMT/UTC ) Session 4 - Biofouling management: Assessment of methods (Thursday 23 September 0730 to 0900 GMT/UTC)

BIMCO's Ashok Srinivasan will also be speaking in Session 4 – "Biofouling management: Assessment of method" giving a talk entitled “Taking in-water cleaning a step further".


He will introduce how cleaning a ship’s submerged parts from barnacles and other growths, while the ship is in the water, can transfer invasive species to local marine environments unless they are properly cleaned and the debris is captured. To combat this problem, and to provide clarity and quality assurance to shipowners, ports and government authorities, BIMCO and other industry partners have published the first industry standard on in-water cleaning of ships, in January 2021. The presentation will inform about the work of the industry working group, the content of the standard and its associated documents. The webinar will also inform about the progress made since January 2021 and the next steps in the process, which will as a whole, take in-water cleaning to a whole new level.