MRV Drives Data Propulsion

Marine Propulsion

1 August 2017 – The EU MRV regulation moves a step closer in August 2017. Will this requirement for monitoring and reporting see a boost in adoption of ‘big data’ technology?

The EU Monitoring, Reporting and Verification (MRV) regulations came into force in July 2015. The regulations are designed to cut marine vessel CO2 emissions through enhanced capture and collection of data.

The migration of data collection and reporting from a voluntary to a mandatory action on the part of shipowners could have profound implications for the uptake of data-analytics technology in shipping as a whole, as shipowners – already forced to handle and report emissions data – use the capability more widely on their vessels.

As specified in Article 6 of the regulation, for every vessel that will be making a commercial call in an EU port from January 2018, a monitoring plan (MP) needs to be developed. Each MP must include the identity of the ship and shipping company/shipowner; an identification of emissions sources; a description of procedures for monitoring voyages, fuel consumption and activity data; methodology for data gaps; and procedures for quality control and identification of responsibilities and ICT systems used.

The MP must also specify which of the four permissible emissions logging and monitoring methods have been used. The permitted methods are via bunker fuel delivery notes and periodic stock-takes of fuel tanks, bunker fuel tank monitoring on board, flowmeters for applicable combustion processes, and direct emissions measurements.

With the first legal deadline having just passed on 31 August, it is paramount that operators have their MRV preparations in place, and moves in this direction will be seen as a boost for those manufacturers supplying marine system and equipment. As IMO is introducing a parallel IMO consumption data-collection system, this is an issue that needs to be addressed by shipowners worldwide, not just those who sail to EU ports.


Classification societies are keen to promote the use of performance-monitoring technology as a means of ensuring compliance with MRV. Bureau Veritas, for instance, announced in July that it will offer Shipulse from Ascenz as a technology for real-time ship performance and monitoring in a deal to service shipowners worldwide.

Shipulse captures critical shipboard data covering fuel consumption, bunkering, engine, hull and propeller activity to help monitor performance management and compliance, as well as efficiency, safety and environmental objectives.

The agreement will see Bureau Veritas market Shipulse across its network, offering complementary services and analysis tools based on data-analysis needs across fleets, ship modelling capabilities and the ability to integrate BV software – such as weather routing and trim optimisation.

Shipulse’s CarbonComply module supports EU MRV monitoring and reporting requirements as it enables automated monitoring and reporting of ship CO2 emissions.

CarbonComply can register voyages automatically without the need for manual calculations to break down fuel consumption or emissions on a per-voyage basis.

The system is able to detect and classify different voyage stages such as sea passages, manoeuvring and drifting, and to identify when a ship is either moored or at anchor. This allows for greater granularity from profiling emissions associated with a sea passage versus those from time spent when anchored.