Lisa Owen, VP of Sales and Marketing
The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently announced its updates to the 2014 Small Vessel General Permit (sVGP) for non-recreational or non-military vessels less than 79 feet in length that are operating as a means of transportation. In order to comply with the sVGP requirements, operators must use environmentally acceptable lubricants (EALs) and minimally toxic, phosphate-free and biodegradable cleaners. These requirements will go into effect starting December 19, 2014, and further extend the reach of the 2013 VGP regulations.With this recent announcement, it is becoming more and more apparent that the U.S. is leading the way in the adoption of biodegradable products, such as EALs. As these products are critical to marine operations, distribution will play an even larger role in ensuring that quality, compliant products are available.
At RSC Bio Solutions, we’ve taken steps to extend our production and distribution network as the market for EALs has grown globally.
• We’ve signed a partnership agreement with AEGIR-Marine to increase the availability of VGP-approved EALs for stern tube seal applications. As part of this non-exclusive partnership, we will share responsibility for global distribution.
• We’ve expanded the domestic distribution of many of our EnviroLogic® products, as well as SAFECARE® cleaners and GreenSorb® absorbents, through a partnership with Grainger. Additionally, our global market is enhanced by distribution through DistributionNOW locations including Mexico, Brazil, Dubai and Singapore.
• We have entered into a supply agreement with Chevron to provide hydraulic fluids and gear oils, which will be distributed by Chevron as Clarity Synthetic EA Hydraulic and Gear Oils in North American markets and as EnviroLogic® 3000 and 200 series products in European and Asian markets. This collaboration represents an important step in providing technically feasible, environmentally acceptable lubricants to marine operators as they are serviced in ports around the world.
• We recently opened a warehousing facility in Rotterdam, Netherlands—Europe’s largest port—to facilitate the distribution of our EnviroLogic® line of lubricants, hydraulic fluids and gear oils designed for oil and gas and marine applications.
These partnerships and expansions are crucial to meeting customers’ needs for EALs with proven performance. We believe that our product availability now is such that our products are wherever our customers are, but we will continue to seek strong partners to increase the depth and breadth of biodegradable options for operations around the world.
How does availability play a role in your operation’s product selection? How do you see the need for EALs and other biodegradable products playing out on the global stage?