In late January, ABS, a leading provider of global maritime classification services, released its Navigating the Northern Sea Route Advisory to support shipowners and operators intending to transit the increasingly popular commercial shipping routes through the Arctic seas.
The comprehensive advisory, which was developed with assistance from Russia’s Central Marine Research and Design Institute, provides owners with the information they need to apply for permits and to identify the possible technical and operational risks that could arise when trading in some of the world’s most challenging commercial shipping environments.
“The Northern Sear Route was virtually unnavigable by all but powerful icebreakers just a few short years ago,” says Todd Grove, Chief Technology Officer for ABS, noting that the Russian Federation’s recent moves to encourage international shipping through the Northern Sea Route (NSR) and the melting ice floes there have opened commercial shipping opportunities. “The NSR’s growing popularity has positive implications for transit times between Asia and Northern Europe,” Grove explains,“but the often unpredictable and unfamiliar shipping environment through the north also poses operational and technical challenges. This Advisory was developed to provide the industry with some of the information it needs to navigate those challenges safely and efficiently, while also helping to minimize the impact on the environment.”
THE ADVISORY INCLUDES THE FOLLOWING:
- The Northern Sea Route
- The Arctic environment
- NSR Regulations
- Winterization strategies
- The practice of navigating in ice-covered waters
- Ports of the NSR