Preventing Marine Pollution

Our Bilge System is being Adopted as an International Guideline

During ship operations, leaking water, oil, and other such fluids collect as an oily mixture (bilge) on the floor of the engine room and similar places. And so, in 1996, our company designed an original system whereby the amount of generated bilge can be greatly reduced and adopted the system for use on our ships as a rule. Bilge could thus be suppressed to 28 liters a day (98.4% reduction) on a containership, for example. As an environmentally conscious company, we first brought this concept to the attention of the Japanese government and later proposed it to the IMO*1 as a government-backed plan that merited expansion throughout the world's shipping industry. It was adopted as an international guideline in March 2006.

*1 IMO (International Maritime Organization)
a specialized agency of the United Nations that promotes intergovernmental cooperation and agreement about technical matters and laws concerning marine transportation and shipbuilding.

Installation of Double Hulls on Tankers

NYK is installing double hulls on the bottoms and cargo-tank walls of its tankers in order to minimize oil-spill damage in the event of grounding or collision. The operation of single-hull tankers will in principle be prohibited from 2010, and NYK plans to complete the installation of double hulls on all its tankers by the spring of 2009. Two of its single-hull crude oil carriers will be converted for use as iron ore carriers and begin service to China from 2008. To further improve safety, double-hull structures have been used on the fuel tanks of all crude oil carriers completed since December 2005.


Preventing accidents that pollute the Oceans

A tanker's inner bottom is subject to pitting corrosion from the salt water in the petroleum that precipitates during transport, and these pits have the potential to cause oil leakage and other serious accidents. NYK therefore launched a joint project with Nippon Steel Corporation to develop a corrosion-resistant steel and use it commercially.

Before the use of this corrosion-resistant steel, thousands of pits needing repairs were found during crude-oil tanker inspections. However, after the application of corrosion-resistant steel to inner bottom plate, no pits required any repair at inspections.


The effectiveness of this corrosion-resistant steel has been recognized internationally. Upon the 2010's revision in the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) treaty in relation to corrosion-preventive measures to cargo holds of crude-oil tankers, corrosion-resistant steel was recognized as an effective anticorrosion technology. Also, Nippon Steel Corporation and NYK Line have received the Contribution Prize for fiscal 2010 from the New Technology Development Foundation at the 43rd Ichimura Industrial Awards, which is respected for their tradition of recognizing parties who contribute to the growth of Japanese industries through the domestic development of technology.

Ship Recycle

To minimise industrial accidents and environmental pollution when ships are dismantled, the IMO adopted a ship-recycling convention in 2009. With a view to the convention's entry into force, countries worldwide are progressing towards ratification. As the convention requires, the NYK Group prepares lists of the volumes and locations of hazardous materials on board and posts the lists inside vessels. In addition, we have established a scrapping policy that takes IMO Guidelines into consideration and is based on securing scrapping locations that are reliable and environment friendly.

Following this policy, we select yards that are not only environment-friendly but also emphasise work safety. Moreover, based on our original agreements for the sale of vessels for scrapping, after delivering a vessel we conduct on-site inspections of the locations to check safety and environmental measures as needed.

Scrapping Process


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