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3rd GloFouling R&D Forum and Exhibition
on Biofouling Prevention and Management for Maritime Industries

Shaping the future of biofouling management

4 - 8 November 2024
Busan, the Republic of Korea

The 3rd GloFouling R&D Forum will be held in Busan, the Republic of Korea from Monday 4 to Friday 8 November 2024 at The Westin Josun Busan Hotel. The Forum will feature sessions with traditional formats of presentations, and open dialogue panels to encourage debate and exchange of ideas with participation from attendees and delegates, under the main theme of Shaping the future of biofouling management.

The R&D Forum programme will cover the following key topics:

  • Invasive aquatic species (IAS) and their impacts

  • Innovative solutions for biofouling management

  • Monitoring, testing, early detection and rapid response

  • IAS and biofouling management in MPAs and PSSAs

  • Biofouling on ships: fuel efficiency and GHG emissions

  • Policy developments and compliance

  • Managing biofouling in ports, shipyards and drydocks

  • Women in biofouling

See key dates below for more information to assist with planning.

Programme

Key dates

Call for Abstracts (presentations, papers and posters) - OPEN until 14 June 2024 (extended)

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Opening registration - 29 February 2024 (moved forward)

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Announcement of the Final Programme - 20 September 2024

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Closing registration - 4 October 2024

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R&D Forum - 4-8 November 2024

Programme in key dates

Call for Abstracts
(presentations, papers and posters)

The event will focus on the latest developments in the field of biofouling management. Proposals on the following topics listed below are encouraged (hover over the image to see more details).

See instructions how to submit the abstract here.

Balanus 3 - c.Andrew Butko Wikimedia Commons.JPG

Invasive aquatic species (IAS) and their impacts

According to a recent IPBES report, alien species are being introduces by human activity to all regions and biomes of the world at unprecedented rates. Ships’ biofouling is one of the main vectors for the introduction of invasive aquatic species, which are considered to be one of the greatest threats to the world’s marine biodiversity. IAS can alter the structure and function of marine habitats, spread infectious diseases and degrade ecosystem services and coastal livelihoods. We call for proposals on latest scientific developments related to IAS introduced by biofouling and their impacts.

In-water inspection Galapagos_c. GloFouling Partnerships

Innovative solutions for biofouling management

Best management practices and methods as well as innovative approaches and technologies are essential to minimise and manage biofouling growth on ships and other marine structures. We are calling for abstracts and presentations on the use of robotics, decision support software and artificial intelligence (AI), in-water cleaning systems and grooming, novel hull and ship designs minimizing biofouling, innovative anti-fouling coatings, and marine growth prevention systems (MGPS), amongst others. Examples applicable to the shipping, oil & gas, aquaculture and the ocean renewables industries are welcome.

Testing Galapagos_c. International Maritime Organization

Monitoring, testing, early detection and rapid response

The latest approaches using modern technology and best practices for monitoring and testing of biofouling and IAS, and early detection of IAS is crucial to increase the chance and possibility of containment or other rapid response options in the affected area. We invite interested speakers to submit proposals on case studies and innovative approaches in relation to these topics.

Marine biodiversity_c. UN.png

IAS and biofouling management in MPAs and PSSAs

The prevention and control of IAS in Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) and Particularly Sensitive Sea Areas (PSSAs) are key instruments for the preservation of marine biodiversity. The growing number of external pressures, particularly from vessels, requires suitable solutions to address risk of invasions in vulnerable marine environment. We welcome proposals on existing gaps related to legislation, planning and implementation of preventative measures for biofouling and IAS management in marine protected areas.

Ship_c. AdobeStock

Biofouling on ships: fuel efficiency and GHG emissions

Biofouling increases the hydrodynamic resistance of ships and their fuel consumption. To maintain speed, fouled ships must burn more fuel, thus increasing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Therefore, biofouling management is recognised as one important tool to minimize GHG emissions from ships. We invite speakers to share their knowledge on studies, research and solutions for monitoring ship performance and measuring the impact of biofouling on the energy efficiency of ships.

IMO meeting 1_Flickr (credit not required).jpg

Policy developments and compliance

UN global policy frameworks related to biodiversity protection have been recently adopted which tackles invasives species. In the shipping sector specifically, IMO adopted the 2023 Guidelines for the Control and Management of Ships' Biofouling to Minimize the Transfer of Invasive Aquatic Species (IMO Biofouling Guidelines) with new and updated content. In parallel, other initiatives, such as the development of ISO standards and industry practices are taking place. Submission of proposals on policy and compliance approaches to implement IMO Biofouling Guidelines, including the development and adoption of local, national or regional measures and their effectiveness, is encouraged.

Port_c. Piqsels

Managing biofouling in ports, shipyards and drydocks

Ports, shipyards and drydocks play a central role in the prevention and management of biofouling, as they are essential hubs for ship inspection, hull maintenance and ship recycling. Due to this key role, ports and drydocks, and their infrastructure, are also exposed to the introduction of IAS and biosecurity risks, that may hinder operations and have important economic effects. Under this topic we encourage proposals related to port and drydock operations, risk assessment, port technologies for inspection, biofouling waste contention and downstream management.

Women in Maritime 01_c. IMO.jpg

Women in biofouling

The value of gender equality is widely acknowledged. Nevertheless, the maritime sector, a historically male dominated sector, continues to struggle to ensure a fair representation of women in the workplace. IMO has taken a strategic approach to help ocean’s stakeholders achieve gender equality in accordance with SDG 5. However, increased efforts are needed to translate this strategy into tangible results to close the gender gap. We are looking to receive contributions related to challenges and best approaches to solve this issue, including how to increase opportunities for women working in the biofouling management sector.

Download call for abstract instructions here.

Download template for abstract submission here.

Timelines:

  • Deadline to submit abstracts was extended and now is Friday, 14 June 2024.

  • Abstracts will be reviewed by an international scientific committee and authors will be notified of the acceptance by Wednesday, 17 July 2024.

 

Please submit your abstract to glofouling@imo.org.

Photo credits (from top left corner): Andrew Butko (Wikimedia Commons); GloFouling Partnerships project; International Maritime Organization; UN; Adobe Stock; International Maritime Organization; Piqsels, International Maritime Organization; Hempel

Abstract submission instructions
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