ENVI 524 Environmental Economics For Public Policy


Victoria policy for ballast water disposal

It is essential to critically examine the economic implications of policy.

You will need to make recommendations for changes and draw conclusions about how effective the policy is.

Answer these questions to help you answer this portion of the assignment.

What market problem (deficit) is the government trying fix?

Is the current approach to resolving the problem successful?

What modifications would you make to increase the effectiveness of this policy?



In most of Victoria’s areas, there are several water channels. These channels include the coast, bays rivers, inlets and lakes.

Victoria’s coastline is approximately 2500 km long, with more than 120 bays and inlets along its length.

Three of Victoria’s largest bays are Western Port (Centre Inlet), Port Phillip, and Port Phillip.

Victoria also boasts more than 85,000 km worth of rivers and 13,000 natural wetlands.

Victoria’s channels are used to support many industries and activities like commercial fishing and aquaculture, boat repair and marine, commercial shipping and related industries, as well as cruise ships, transport (ferries) and tourism (Goss 1990).

There are also opportunities for recreational activities such as boating and fishing.

Victoria water channels also offer other services like emergency and regulatory, agricultural production through irrigation, domestic and rural water usage, cultural pride, heritage sites, and the protection of many floras and fauna, including endangered and scarce species, and wetlands of national or international environmental significance.

Ballast water is used in order to maintain the vessel’s structural integrity and stability.

Ballast water is usually pumped out before cargo is loaded onto ships and then back into the ships when it is unloaded.

Ballast water is important to ship for efficient transportation, but it also threatens aquatic species by moving them to an unfamiliar environment and thereby threatening their lives. This poses a grave ecological, economic, and health risk to the local communities.

It could also contain dangerous substances and diseases-causing organisms.

Victorians decided to establish a policy for ballast water on ships.

One ship discharged 100000m2 ballast water off the coast of Peru in 1991. This contained bacteria and viruses which caused the outbreak in cholera in Peru (Karjalainen 2017, Karjalainen 2017).

This research shows how harmful water of ballast can have on human lives.

Ballast water management is a key policy to reduce the risk of marine pests entering the waterways.

The principal purpose of the plan was to protect state waters and reduce the risks of marine pests being introduced into the waterways. Also, the commonwealth’s requirements regarding international ballast waters were met by the establishment of risk-based management in Victoria.

It was also intended to maintain and protect the economic significance of fishing, tourism, and port activities.

It was also intended to lower costs and ease the process of eliminating marine pests.

The value of waterways is derived from the support industries, such as the boating and fishing sector, associated manufacturing and retail tourism, tour boats and commercial shipping.

The economy is supported by recreational boating which contributes approximately $ 5 billion each year. This accounts for both full-time jobs as well as fisheries income, which contributes close to $7 Billion annually and accounts for 33000 full-time jobs.

Visitors and tourists also find the waterways attractive.

Lake Eildon is a great example of a place that has helped to create jobs and support local communities.

The Victoria and four other commercial ports act as important drivers for the state’s economy, serving as gateways to major international trade routes.

Ballast water management is focused on the preservation, not destruction, of the marine environment. This has an impact on the economy of Victoria.

For domestic ballastwater arrangements, there are three major issues to consider. The mandatory exchange is where ships must exchange ballast water regardless if they are at risk or how long the cruise. This is standard for all international ships that wish to enter Australian ports.

High risk exchanges may limit the number required ships to exchange ballast waters.

The domestic management arrangements for Victorian ports do not require additional prerequisites.

It is possible that ships will soon be able perform ballast water treatment onboard, although this would increase the cost of transportation.

Additional taxes will be assessed on ships for high-risk ballastwater exchanges. This will depend on how far the ship has to travel. Fuel and delay costs are also included.

Although the costs for distant offshore ballastwater exchange are relatively low, they will not be distributed equally across states.

Additional costs include ballast water and logbook reviews as well as maintenance of the ballast management tool and database.

The pest volume can be used to determine the port’s condition.

Due to management and maintenance costs, government expenses can reach $1 Million annually.

The cost of shipping domestically may increase, which could have an impact on the economy. However, the equilibrium effects of ecomony may help to track these effects.

Other costs will include continuous training and motivation port and harbor users, the production and provision of waste management plans and adequate reception facilities. The groundwork and implementation oil and chemical emergencies plans are also required to meet the requirements of EPA guidelines.

Implementing the policy will not only increase the cost of managing ballast waters. The government of Victoria can also profit from the annual agreement fees between ship owners and fines that are imposed on non-compliant vessels. There is also an economic benefit to the Victoria local ports.


To prevent the discharge of waste ballast water, there are several steps you should take.

Ballast water exchange, which involves the exchange of ballast water at sea and using certain methods that are dependent upon the ship’s stability and structural design, is the preferred method.

You can use flow thorough, sequential or dilution methods to meet your ballast water exchange needs.

The exchange method is critical in ensuring that volumetric exchange is at 90%.

The exchange should take place within 12 miles of the Victorian State Coast.

It is crucial that ballast water exchanges are done in safe ways.

For example, the empty or fill method requires that high-risk ballast waters tanks be emptied beyond the Victorian Coast before they are filled with water from the ocean.

With stripping pumps, all domestic high-risk ballast water should be removed until the suction has been lost.

You can also use the flow through method where the ballast tank is full. The entire tank capacity is pumped through to the reservoir.

The EPA will confirm the 95% volumetric exchange was used for ballast water exchanges.

This involves an inspection of all records that relate to ballastwater exchange operations. The state will be charged a fee for this inspection.

It is essential to establish an acceptable volumetric trade rate.

The ship masters need to ensure that the pump rates used in calculations are accurate.

Non-complaint ship pose a danger to the marine environment and to the economic viability of local ports.

A dilution process is another option that involves a tank’s full capacity being exchanged at 300 per cent.

This amount must be propelled into the tank in order to reach the acceptable 90% volumetric interchange (David, et al.

(The flow chart below illustrates steps the government has taken to manage ballast water.

Flow chart of domestic ballast water management for Victoria (EPA Victoria 2015, Figure 1)

The Economic Impact of The Policy

The policy was established by the government to prevent the spread of disease to humans. They also support the fisheries sector with their efforts to ensure that the marine life thrives.

Keep the tourism sector in Victoria’s coastal areas, encourage development through port-related industries and growth of harbor towns. This will reduce pollution caused by waste ballast water.

Maintain the Victoria coastline’s economic significance.

The policy had a positive effect on Victoria’s economy.

Recreational fishing has been a significant economic driver in Victoria. The policy attempted to address the issue and avoid any negative effects that would have a severe impact on the Victorian economy and the global tourism market.

The policy has had a positive effect upon the ship manufacturing industry. This has seen increased revenue from the construction of ships that conform to the policy and the installation water management systems.

It has also benefited the shipping industry in Williamstown Dockyard Victoria. These areas are responsible for maintaining the ships and modifying them to conform with the policy.


Research to find safer methods for ballast water treatment should receive more funding from the government.

Regular inspections of ships’ ballast water treatment equipment should be required.

Permanent fresh water ballast should be used by ships to lower treatment costs (Bailey 2015 pp.

The negative effects of ballast water on the environment, economy, and human health of the people living along the Victoria coast are conclusive.

This policy was created to help address the problem. It has also helped with economic challenges. The policy has provided additional benefits to the Victoria State government.

I hope the government will reconsider the policy and come up with cheaper, more economic solutions.


The diversity of port policy policies and economic policies.

Maritime Policy & Management. 17(3). pp. 221-23.

Reforming coastal management to improve community involvement and integration in Victoria (Australia).

Nguyen H.O., 2015

Pricing policy and practice for port infrastructure: A case study from Australia and New Zealand.

Australian Journal of Maritime & Ocean Affairs 7, 2: pp.110-131.

David, M.; Gollasch (S.) and Leppakoski (E.), 2013.

Baltic Sea case study: Risk assessment of exemptions from ballastwater management.

Marine pollution bulletin 75(1), pp.205-217.

This overview covers thirty years of research into ballast water as a vector of aquatic invasive species to freshwaters and marine environments.

Aquatic ecosystem health and management, 18(3): pp.261-268.

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