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Interview de Mme Paillette Palaiologou Membre de Comité Maritime de la CCIFG et Vice-président de la division Gestion et Opérations (M&O), Zone Europe du Sud-Est, Mer Noire et Adriatique (SEEBA), Bureau Veritas Group

At the Elnavi Magazine April issue: "Bureau Veritas is tackling the wider challenges of Energy Transition and Sustainability".

Lisez ici l'interview en angalis, de Mme Paillette Palaiologou membre du Comité Maritime de la CCIFG et Vice-président de la division Gestion et Opérations (M&O), Zone Europe du Sud-Est, Mer Noire et Adriatique (SEEBA), Bureau Veritas Group, parue dans la revue maritime ELNAVI, numéro d'avril:

At the Elnavi Magazine April issue, "Bureau Veritas is tackling the wider challenges of Energy Transition and Sustainability".

 

1. Do you believe that the new requirements for more sophisticated ships, corporate and transparent operations will lead to more reforms in the sector of class societies?

The increasing demands for sophisticated ships and corporate transparency in the maritime industry are likely to affect reforms in the class society sector. Newer ships are equipped with complex technologies like autonomous navigation systems and advanced propulsion systems, mandating Class societies to adapt their inspection and certification processes to ensure the safety and reliability of these technologies. The demand for greener and safer shipping operations is growing. Class societies must enhance their standards related to environmental protection, emissions reduction, and safety protocols. They may also need to invest in training and hiring personnel with expertise in emerging technologies. Novel designs necessitate expertise and agility. Reforms could focus on ensuring crew readiness for operating sophisticated vessels.

Classes need to be transparent in their operations and decision-making to maintain public trust. They may need to enhance their reporting practices, disclose potential conflicts of interest, and demonstrate independence. More sophisticated risk assessment methods may be needed to identify and mitigate potential hazards associated with new technologies and operating environments. Class societies must address cyber risks, develop guidelines for secure ship systems, conduct cybersecurity audits, and certify vessels’ resilience against cyber threats. They need to improve public access to information about their activities, including inspection reports and certification decisions. Overall, the new requirements for ships and transparency are likely to propel class societies to adapt and evolve. Whether this leads to more reforms depends on various factors, predominantly the industry's willingness to embrace change and the ability to navigate the challenges involved. Furthermore, the trend toward greater openness will influence reforms in the ship classification sector.

 

2. How did you tackle the difficulties arising from the geopolitical events, sanctions and the changes in the seaborne trade?

At Bureau Veritas (BV), we address the challenges arising from geopolitical events, sanctions and shifts in seaborne trade through a holistic approach. Firstly, we closely monitor global developments, assessing their impact on vessel operations, safety, and compliance. Drawing on our extensive expertise, we collaborate with our customers to develop updated guidelines and protocols, ensuring vessels adapt to evolving trade dynamics and regulatory requirements.

Our proactive support to the industry extends to providing advisory services, conducting risk assessments, and delivering training programs, empowering ship owners to navigate geopolitical uncertainties while maintaining operational efficiency. Additionally, we leverage our global network to offer support and services wherever needed, ensuring vessels receive timely assistance to address emerging challenges.

By staying abreast of geopolitical developments and fostering collaboration within the maritime community, we support informed decision-making and risk management strategies for ship owners and operators. Through continuous monitoring, proactive engagement, and strategic collaboration, we strive to mitigate the impact of geopolitical events on seaborne trade and uphold the safety, compliance, and resilience of the maritime industry.

 

3. Can you describe your company’s/organisation’s low carbon/GHG reduction strategies and tools for environmental compliance?

As a Business to Business to Society Company, Bureau Veritas places sustainability at the heart of its missions and at its Internal Strategy to meet the challenges of Environmental Protection.

Our strategy is built around renewables and alternative Energies through Energy transition, Sustainable use of Natural resources through Maritime pollution prevention and Industry Carbon footprint, through Carbon footprint monitoring, Energy saving and Emissions control.

Relevant to the latter and to ensure full compliance with all legal Environmental requirements within our Company we address the issue of Carbon management reduction and reporting by using GreenHub, a BV Corporate tool used to report Environmental data.

Our Company’s Carbon footprint is calculated with data related to key Environmental Emissions resulting from our operations. The required data (Energy, Refrigerants, Business travel, Water, Waste, Paper, and Offsets) is entered into our GreenHub Tool which automatically calculates CO₂ Emission factors defined in the tool.

Each Bureau Veritas Entity can use GreenHub to access its own Carbon footprint and determine which of its activities are generating most of the Carbon emissions, to meet our established clear objectives aiming to a sustained progression in reduction of our Carbon footprint, our Waste, the protection of our Biodiversity and reduction of Water used.

Our commitment to protect the planet and people’s future generations is unconditional and is fully integrated throughout our operations.

 

4. Explain the role of your personnel in the continuous evolving course of your company during the last years?

At Bureau Veritas, our people play a pivotal role in our company's ongoing evolution – this is why “People” is one of the three pillars of our new strategy LEAP | 28 announced a few days ago. We firmly believe that our people’s expertise and commitment to integrity and customer service drive our success. Our evolved people model leverages deep-rooted knowledge to cultivate strategic competencies essential for future growth. Through targeted training and career advancement opportunities, we empower our workforce to navigate a dynamic business landscape, ensuring Bureau Veritas remains a leader in innovation and excellence.

 

5. Describe your company’s/class society’s partnerships in Greece and globally in the fields of technology, fuel testing and other activities.

We established the Technology & Innovation Department in our Piraeus office, covering the South East Europe, Black Sea and Adriatic zone in 2018. Since then we have been actively involved in

several Joint Industry Projects bringing together owners, shipyards and technology providers. The geographic area that we are controlling has the benefit of including both owners and equipment manufacturers primarily in Greece and Italy and quite a few projects involved both countries in both roles. I can mention as representative examples our partnership with METIS and Laskaridis for the development of the BV SMART notations for environmental performance monitoring and the ongoing projects with MSC Cargo and Wartsila for retrofitting of existing vessels to LNG and Ammonia fuel.

Considering our client’s needs for support with alternative fuels our close cooperation with the BV VeriFUEL fuel testing services has resulted in several Biofuel pilot projects, gathering valuable practical experience for using such fuels on board. Methanol fuel quality standards are also a subject of concern and our experts are already available to assist.

Finally on a global level we have established a strategic partnership with OrbitMI, bringing a range of digital services to our clients that cover, among others, their growing needs of environmental metrics monitoring and reporting, efficiency optimization and performance monitoring. The role of Class is evolving from a pure safety compliance verifier to a performance verifier. While we never overlook our core role and competences, we fully recognize and embrace this new role and we are prepared to fully cover it for the benefit of our clients.

 

6. Do you intend to enter new sectors of shipping and launch innovative projects addressing sustainable fuels and other future challenges?

At Bureau Veritas (BV), we're playing a key role in initiatives that address sustainable fuels and other future challenges for the shipping industry. Recently, BV published a report titled “Decarbonization Trajectories – Sharing Expertise: Realistic Approaches to Shipping’s Decarbonization”, which examines five distinct scenarios for shipping’s transition to net-zero.

These scenarios consider parameters such as socio-economic forecasts for the evolution of demand for maritime transport, the potential speed for the uptake of green fuels, and technical efficiency improvements in shipping.

Furthermore, BV is actively addressing the imperative for decarbonisation within the shipping industry through the establishment of our new Future Shipping Team (FST). This collaborative initiative brings together global expertise within BV M&O and other divisions, reaching beyond maritime to encompass the entire value chain, including new fuels, energy-efficient technologies, life-cycle assessments, and progress toward ESG objectives, to tackle the wider challenges of energy transition and sustainability.

The FST operates with a clear purpose: to coordinate research, development, and client response to advance sustainable practices and decarbonisation efforts in shipping. Organised into workstreams, the FST prioritises projects based on ambitious timelines and clear roadmaps, ensuring effective delivery and client support.

The creation of the FST is designed to promote a culture of collective responsibility, collaboration, and tangible actions toward building a more sustainable maritime world. By aligning innovative initiatives with industry-wide efforts to mitigate climate change, BV aims to lead global change in the shipping sector, delivering tangible results for clients and contributing to a more sustainable world.

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