Transport Canada has already conducted sulphur tests on “a number of samples” taken from ships calling at ports in the country since beginning a program to verify compliance with the 0.10% sulphur limit in the North American Emission Control Area (NA-ECA).
The sulphur content of all the samples taken have been verified by an accredited laboratory and all have been compliant, an official with Transport Canada has told IBIA.
Marine Safety Inspectors started checking ECA compliance through on-site fuel sampling and testing on 22 August, using portable fuel analyzers onboard vessels where available.
Portable sulphur analyzers are not available to inspectors in all ports, but Transport Canada “will try to cover as many ports as possible” as it rolls the program out across the country, according to the official.
Portable sulphur analyzers can be used to assess initial compliance, though with inspectors sending samples to an accredited laboratory for confirmation.
Currently, all the analyzer tests are being followed up with a sample tested at an accredited laboratory, the Transport Canada official said.
She confirmed that inspections will be targeted at ships in all Canadian ports. Transport Canada does not, however, have a target in terms of the percentage of ships that inspectors will require samples from.
If samples are confirmed to be non-compliant at an accredited laboratory, any enforcement action would be “dependent on the circumstance and the decision of the Marine Safety Inspector,” the official said.