Commemorating 50 Years of Commitment

Many people celebrate each anniversary of their wedding or other act of union, and a progressively greater sense of achievement often gives way to reflection, which in turn sometimes leads to formal restating of vows, in order to re-emphasise long-standing devotion.

" This year is the 50th commemoration of our industry's bonding with MARPOL, the international Convention that has spent the last half century tackling marine pollution from oil, chemicals, sewage, garbage and noxious gases. We should certainly celebrate that, and the unambiguous commitment to clean oceans that the MARPOL compact means. However, with climate change our foe, decarbonisation our watchword and net zero emissions our target we must continue to act with urgency, rather than complacency. In the delicate and complex matrix of transition from fossil fuels and endorsement of many other forms of improved stewardship, our own accomplishment is yet to be measured, so instead of mutual congratulation it is right that we mark 50 years with MARPOL by forward-looking reaffirmation.

Here, on International Maritime Day, eight Synergy seafarers cite key Convention context, doctrine and rationale as part of promises, pledges and reassertion given and expressed on behalf of the entire Group, and look forward to the coming years proving even more effective in addressing the many environmental challenges.

The honeymoon is long over, and it is up to all of us to make things work.