Lloyd’s Register (LR) has announced a new verification service to shipowners and operators wishing to demonstrate their success in reducing the environmental impact of their activities beyond the requirements of classification or statutory rules and regulations. The service is cost effective and can be delivered with minimal interruption to ship operations, according to LR.

The verification service is approved by the Clean Shipping Project, the organization that developed the Clean Shipping Index. More than 1,000 ships have been entered into their Clean Shipping Index database. Verification is the logical next step to provide assurance to all involved, LR said in a prepared statement.

The Clean Shipping Index is a tool that takes into account significant environmental impacts of shipping, such as emissions to air and water, use of chemicals, effects of antifouling etc. The index is used to rank ships or shipping companies in a database according to the aspects that are most relevant to the user. So, a cargo owner seeking shipping companies with high environmental performance can focus and assess the criteria that matter to them, identifying criteria such as carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, or other issues such as use of biodegradable oils.

LR has been involved with the Clean Shipping Project for many years, providing advice in 2008 and early 2009 to support the development of the index - trying to ensure that it provides a reasonable representation of environmental performance. When ship operators and cargo owners identified the need for verification, Lloyd’s Register developed a trial verification process and tested it by delivering several trial verification of reported Clean Shipping Index scores with the support of leading Scandinavian ship operators. The verification process, developed using insight from the combined experience of Lloyd’s Register Marine and Lloyd’s Register Quality Assurance Ltd, requires an audit of the ship and, to minimize cost and inconvenience, this can be delivered in conjunction with other onboard inspections delivered by LR.