(WASHINGTON) — The American Waterways Operators (AWO) and the American Chemistry Council (ACC) have renewed for three years a memorandum of agreement to promote environmental, health, safety and security performance through ACC's Responsible Care and AWO's Responsible Carrier Program. This agreement was originally executed in 2006, and subsequently renewed in 2010 and 2013.
The MOA extends cooperation and collaboration between chemical shippers and carriers and provides ACC's Responsible Care Partner companies in the marine sector the option of using AWO's Responsible Carrier Program audit system to meet ACC's Responsible Care certification requirements. Chemicals account for roughly 10 percent of total barge traffic, with 70 million tons moved by barge in 2014.
Since 2006, all eligible Responsible Care Partner companies within the marine sector that transport chemicals via barge have utilized the agreement to meet their obligations for both the Responsible Carrier Program and Responsible Care, saving time and resources while promoting best practices that protect waterways and surrounding communities.
"The continued partnership between ACC and AWO reaffirms our commitment to protect the environment and public health, as well as the safety of the men and women who transport our products on America's waterways," said ACC President and CEO Cal Dooley. "The chemical industry is committed to the safe handling of our products throughout the entire value chain, and this MOA exemplifies how ACC works with our partners to achieve this goal and protect the nation's rivers and harbors."
"We are pleased to once again partner with ACC to renew an agreement that strengthens the safety and environmental programs of our respective associations," said AWO President and CEO Tom Allegretti. "This partnership is critical to ensuring the safety and efficiency of maritime transport of chemical industry products in the United States, and we look forward to continued implementation of this agreement to achieve that goal."
Responsible Care is the chemical industry's environmental, health, safety and security performance initiative that extends continuous improvement efforts beyond the facility fence line to include the entire value chain. Participation in Responsible Care is a condition of membership for all ACC Member and Responsible Care Partner companies, all of which had made a CEO-level commitment to uphold the program principles. For more information, visit: www.americanchemistry.com/rc.
The AWO Responsible Carrier Program is accepted by the U.S. Coast Guard as an existing safety management system that complies with the requirements of 46 CFR Subchapter M, Coast Guard regulations promulgated in 2016 establishing a comprehensive inspection regime for towing vessels. Designed for the tugboat, towboat and barge industry, the RCP encompasses all aspects of fleet operations and exceeds regulatory standards while incorporating industry best practices. RCP compliance is a condition of membership for AWO carrier member companies. For more information, visit www.americanwaterways.com/commitment_safety.