WASHINGTON (CN) – To combat the introduction of waterborne invasive species into the United States, the Coast Guard is reducing the allowable concentrations of living organisms in the ballast water of ships coming from other countries.
For organisms larger than 50 microns, discharged ballast must be less than 10 organisms per cubic meter of ballast water. For organisms equal to or smaller than 50 microns and larger than 10 microns, discharged ballast must be less than 10 organisms per milliliter of ballast water.
The Coast Guard believes that the proposed standards for ballast water discharge would provide a greater degree of protection from invasive species than current standards. Treatment of ballast water through chemical means is considered up to 60 percent more effective than exchanging ballast water outside U.S. waters, and 80 percent more effective than unmanaged ballast water discharge in preventing the probability of biological invasions.
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