ENVI 524 Environmental Economics For Public Policy

Table of Contents


Victoria’s policy on ballast water waste

It is important to critically analyze the economic consequences of any policy.

Your task is to draw conclusions about the policy’s effectiveness and make recommendations for changes.

These are the questions you should ask when answering this section of the assignment:

What market problems (deficits) is the government trying solve?

What is the success rate of the current policy to fix the problem?

What would you do to improve the policy’s effectiveness?



There are many water channels in Victoria. These include rivers, lakes, bays, inlets, and the coast.

Victoria boasts approximately 2500km of coastline and more than 120 estuaries, inlets, and bays along its length.

The three largest bays in Victoria are Western Port and Corner Inlet.

There are also more than 85,000km of rivers in the state and 13,000 natural wetlands.

Victoria’s channels support a wide range of activities, including commercial fishing, aquaculture and boat repair.

Recreational opportunities include boating, fishing and diving.

Victoria water channels also provide services such as emergency and regulatory services as well as agricultural production by irrigation and domestic water usage by rural and urban. They also serve as cultural pride and heritage sites and home to many species of flora, fauna, and wetlands that are important for national and international environmental protection.

Ballast water is used for structural stability and stability of vessels.

Ballast water is typically pumped out after cargo is loaded onto a ship, and then pumped back in after the ship has been unloaded.

Ballast water is vital to ship for efficient transport but can also be dangerous to aquatic species by relocating them into an environment they don’t like, posing a serious ecological and economic threat to local communities.

Ballast water can also contain harmful substances or disease-causing organisms.

Victorians established a policy to deal with ballast water aboard ships and vessels.

A ship discharged 100000m2 of ballast water at the coast of Peru, which contained bacteria and viruses that caused the outbreak of cholera.

This research illustrates how harmful water of ballast can have on human life.

Ballast water management was required to manage the marine pests that were introduced into the waterways by the expulsion of ballast. This threatened biodiversity and economic benefits.

The plan had two main goals: to preserve the state waters’ beneficial uses and minimize the risk of marine pests entering the waters. It also fulfilled commonwealth requirements regarding international ballast water. This was done by establishing risk-based management in Victoria for domestic ballast water.

The policy also aimed to preserve and sustain the economic importance of fishing, port activities, and tourism.

It also aimed to lower the cost and difficulties associated with the elimination of marine pests.

The industries that support waterways’ economic value include the fishing and boating industry, as well as associated manufacturing, retail tourism and tour boats. Commercial shipping, fisheries aquaculture, ferrying, and commercial shipping are just a few examples.

Recreational boating is a major contributor to the economy, contributing nearly $ 5 billion annually. It also accounts for full-time jobs and the fisheries income that contributes almost $7 billion per year and accounts 33,000 full-time jobs.

Tourists and visitors also enjoy the natural beauty of the waterways.

Lake Eildon, for example, has been able employ large numbers of people in the north east and provide support to local communities.

The Victoria local ports are a hub of economic activity, as well as four other commercial trading ports that act as key drivers for the state’s economy and major trade gateways to international markets.

Ballast water management focuses mainly on the preservation and enhancement of the marine environment, which has a direct impact on the economic viability of Victoria.

The domestic ballastwater arrangements must be considered. These include mandatory exchange, where ships are required to swap their ballast water regardless how risky or long it takes. This is standard for international ships who wish to enter Australian ports.

An exchange that is high-risk may limit the number ships required to exchange ballast water.

There are no additional requirements for domestic management arrangements in Victorian ports.

The ships may be able to carry out the treatment onboard in the future, but this is unlikely as the extra cost for transportation to treat ballast water will increase.

The distance the ship must travel to exchange high-risk ballast water will determine the additional taxes that will be levied. These costs include fuel and delay costs.

While the direct costs of distant offshore ballast water exchange are reasonable, they won’t be evenly distributed between states.

Additional charges include logbook reviews, ballast water, maintenance of the risk management tool, and the ballastwater management database.

You can also examine the ports based on the number of pests.

The government spends $1 million annually on maintenance and management.

However, an increase in domestic shipping costs could have ripple effects on the rest Australian economy. This can be tracked by looking at the equilibrium effects of the ecomony.

Other costs include the training and motivation for port and harbour users, production of waste administration plans, providing adequate reception facilities, and the preparation and implementation of oil- and chemical emergency plans to comply with EPA guidelines.

The policy’s implementation does not mean an increase in ballast water management costs. Victoria’s government can also benefit from annual fees paid by ship owners to avoid non-compliance. This will help maintain the economic stability at Victoria ports.

Implementation of the Policy

There are steps that can be taken to prevent waste ballast water being released.

Ballast water exchange is recommended. This involves exchange at sea using methods that depend on the ship’s structural design and stability.

To achieve the required ballast water exchange, some methods can be used such as flow thorough, sequential exchange and dilution.

It is crucial to ensure that volumetric exchanges are at least 90%.

At least 12 miles from the Victorian State Coast should be used for exchange.

Ballast water exchange must be done using safe procedures and methods.

The empty or refill method, which requires that high-risk ballast water tanks are emptied from outside the Victorian Coast before being filled with seawater, is an example.

The high-risk domestic ballast water must be emptied until the suction is gone using stripping pumps.

The flow through method is another option. This involves filling the ballast water tanks with water and pumping the entire tank through the reservoir.

The EPA will confirm that ballast water exchanges were conducted using a 95% volumetric trade.

This inspection involves examining records related to ballast water exchange operations that are kept in ships. It can result in a financial loss to the state.

To determine acceptable volumetric exchange, it is necessary to know the pump rate.

Ship masters must ensure that pump rates are accurately calculated.

Non-complaint vessels pose a threat to marine waters and local economic life.

Another option is to use a dilution technique, where the exchange takes place at 300 percent of the tank’s maximum capacity.

To achieve a acceptable 90% volumetric exchange, this amount must be propelled through a tank (David and al.

(The flowchart below shows the steps taken by the government to manage ballast waters.

Flow chart for domestic water management in Victoria (EPA Victoria 2015 figure 1)

Economic Impact of the Policy

The government established a policy to reduce spread of diseases to the human population. It also ensures the survival of marine life and supports the fisheries industry.

To preserve the tourism industry around Victoria’s coast, and allow for development, port-related industries, and the growth of harbour towns to reduce pollution from waste ballast water, it is important to maintain the tourism sector.

Also, preserve the Victoria coast’s economic importance.

The policy has had positive effects on Victoria’s economic situation.

The policy has attempted to correct the problem and prevent any adverse effects that could cripple the Victorian tourism market. Recreational fishing is a key economic factor.

The policy’s implementation has had a positive impact on the shipbuilding industry. Revenue has come from the production of ships that comply with the policy and the installation of water management system.

It has also helped to improve the shipping industry in Williamstown Dockyard Victoria, which is used in maintaining and modifying the ships in accordance with the policy.


The government should increase funding for research into safer ballast water treatment methods.

Regular inspections and repairs to ships’ ballast water treatment systems should be a part of the policy.

To reduce treatment costs, ships should use permanent freshwater ballast (Bailey 2015).

Ballast water is a problem for the Victoria coast’s economy, environment, and health.

The policy helped to address the problem, especially in economic terms. It also provided benefits for the Victoria state government.

We hope that the government will consider more economical and cost-effective ways to improve the policy.

Refer to

Economic policies and seaports: A diversity of port policies.

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

Reforming coastal management in Victoria, Australia to increase community participation and integrate.

Bandara, Y.M.

The pricing of port infrastructure: A case study of New Zealand and Australia’s seaports.

Australian Journal of Maritime & Ocean Affairs 7(2), pp.110–131.

David, M., Gollasch S. and Leppakoski E., 2013.

Assessment of risk for ballast water management exemptions-the Baltic Sea case study.

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

A review of 30 years of research on ballastwater as a vector for aquatic invading species to freshwater or marine environments.

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

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