Shipboard Activities for Energy Efficiency
Considering the above description, all ship crews have certain degree of roles to play on ship energy efficiency. Each crewmember’s role is different to achieve the same goal. For example:
The Master, being overall in charge, has a significant impact on all aspects of ship operation including planning, execution, controls and evaluations. The Master in particular could influence significantly all ship operational issues. Without Master’s full awareness and drive, ship energy management is unlikely to succeed on-board ships. Areas that Master could significantly impact are those related to ship operational aspects such as voyage management, weather routing, just-in-time arrival and so on. The Master has the authority to reroute the vessel at more convenient and cost saving way as well as he has the decision-making capacity to reduce the vessel speed to complete a voyage at much lower fuel consumption but without making significant delays. The master’s management skill has significant implications for ship energy efficiency. So, a ship’s Master could have the highest influence for an energy efficient ship operation than any other ship-board staff.
The Chief Officer plays significant roles on the cargo and loading/unloading operations, ballast management operations, trim optimisation and aspects of hull and propeller condition and maintenance, etc. In this regard, all detailed operational issues are handled by Chief Officer and in this way he/she exerts a lot of influence on various ship activities including energy and environmental management. Good communications between Chief Officer and Chief Engineer would provide a more optimised operation between deck department requirements and engine department efficiency and maintenance requirements. Based on this, the Chief Officer is the second most important person on deck department that could influence the overall ship energy efficiency.
The Chief Engineer being in overall charge of technical aspects of ship engineering systems and machinery operations where the fuel is consumed and energy transformed, could play a major role on technical issues including the condition and performance of engines and various machinery and the way they are utilised. The Chief Engineer normally carries out most of the machinery condition assessment activities, engine record logs and reporting and communications with Master and Chief Officer. The Chief Engineer is the competent person to calculate the optimum output of an engine with the minimum fuel consumption and he has the expertise to control air emission at the same time. By virtue of having the full picture of all engineering system, Chief Engineer is the most important person on-board in terms of energy efficiency implementation and execution.
The Second Engineer, by virtue of being the most engaged person in the engine department on day to day operation and maintenance of various systems, has the second most important role in engine department in ensuring that all machinery are in optimal working condition and performance as well as their usage are limited to requirements.
The other officers and crew members also play vital roles to maintain energy efficiency on board. The watch keepers keep the bare minimum machineries in operation to save energy. They can monitor the auxiliary engine loads and can decide if parallel running of multiple engines is good for economy at all. They can monitor the main engine load and inform the Chief Engineer for necessary action. Similarly, the deck officers can monitor the vessel trim, weather condition etc. to manipulate the best energy efficient option (MariEMS 2017).