zoomIllustration. Source: Pixabay under CC0 Creative Commons license Ahead of the entry into force of the 2020 0.5% sulphur cap, classification society DNV GL has introduced a free web-based application of the Ship Implementation Plan (SIP).As explained, the application enables ship owners and managers to prepare vessel-specific SIPs and maintain an overview of their fleet.While not mandatory, the SIP adresses issues related to preparing the vessel for use of compliant fuel oil and includes items such as risk assessment and planning for actions needed to ensure compliance on 1 January 2020.“As we approach 2020, good preparation will be essential to ensure a smooth transition into using compliant low-sulphur fuels,” Christos Chryssakis, Business Development Manager at DNV GL – Maritime, said.“This includes technical actions, such as hardware upgrades, tank cleaning, and a fuel changeover plan, but also commercial preparations like updating charter party clauses and agreements between owners and charterers on how to best prepare each vessel to minimize operational disruptions. It is important to build flexibility into the plans, to make sure ships are prepared for using different types of compliant fuels, depending on their availability.”DNV GL said that its web-based SIP application is a user-friendly way to prepare such plans. It is easy to update and offers operators an overview of their whole fleet. One of the benefits of the app is that it enables several users to work on a single vessel – allowing coordination between onshore and onboard personnel.Image Courtesy: DNV GLThe SIP application is free of charge and available in the market place of Veracity, DNV GL’s digital platform and industry ecosystem. More than 300 shipping companies are already using the SIP app with over 1,700 vessels registered and actively preparing their Ship Implementation Plans.According to DNV GL, the SIP is not a mandatory requirement, but port state control (PSC) may consider the preparatory actions described in the SIP when verifying compliance. It should cover risk assessment and a mitigation plan on the impact of new fuels, fuel oil system modifications and tank cleaning, fuel oil capacity and segregation capability, procurement of compliant fuel, a fuel oil changeover plan and documentation and reporting.