HULLWIPER has become one of four founding members of the International Maritime Organisation’s Global Industry Alliance for Marine Biosafety.

The GIA will work with the IMO’s GloFouling Partnerships Project to help accelerate the development of technology solutions that help to prevent hull fouling.

Winner of the environmental award at last year’s Australian Maritime & Shipping Industry Awards, HullWiper’s hull cleaning technology uses saltwater jets instead of brushes or abrasives, to remove and collect biofouling with no damage to expensive anti-fouling coatings.

The four founding companies – HullWiper, CleanSubSea, ECOsubsea and Sonihull – represent a cross-section of market leaders from the shipping, aquaculture, offshore oil and gas and ocean renewable energies sectors, all of which have to tackle the issue of biofouling in the course of their normal operations.

Biofouling has both efficiency and ecosystem implications. Unwanted growth on the hull of a ship or other ocean industry superstructure can lead to added drag and therefore increased fuel burn.

Moreover, the potential for invasive aquatic species, which can cause tremendous upheaval and damage to localised ecosystems, is also heightened by uncontrolled fouling.

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Solving these concerns are particularly prescient with a globalised supply chain.

The four companies are to work with the IMO and its UN agency partners to leverage human, technological and financial resources, facilitate industry input into policy developments and create a positive pull for reform processes, and drive the development and dissemination of technological solutions to improve biofouling management.

Simon Doran, managing director, HullWiper, said, “We are passionate about the power of our technology to help solve the pressing problem of hull fouling”.

“Increasing efficiency and eliminating invasive species needs to be a priority for our sector, and we are proud to play our part alongside other market leaders to help clean up our oceans,” Mr Doran said.

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