POLITE, 2022 winner
The beneficiary of the 2022 ITOPF Research and Development (R&D) award is the Huntsman Marine Science Centre in Canada, in partnership with Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences, USA
The winning project – POLITE – seeks to understand the behaviour of Low and Ultra-low Sulfur Fuel Oils (LSFOs and ULSFOs) when exposed to sunlight and their effects on the marine environment.
Specifically, the project aims to understand the significance of photomodification of these products when spilled in the marine environment and their toxicity to marine organisms.
Special attention will be given to how these new products may impact commercially important marine species such as Atlantic cod, American lobster, and green sea-urchin.
Part of the samples used in this project will be provided through a partnership with the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), which is also studying LSFOs and their fate and behaviour from a response perspective.
POLITE follows on from the IMO 2020 regulation, a rule which limits the sulfur in fuel oils used on board ships. With a new generation of fuel oils arising, their physical, chemical, and toxicological properties are less well understood compared to so-called traditional fuel oils.