The US Senate has approved the Vessel Incidental Discharge Act (VIDA) as part of the Congressional Record Senate, giving a new definition to the terms ‘live’ and ‘living’.

The VIDA’s new definition that implies that the ability of organisms to reproduce is considered the key parameter in the assessment of whether an organism is alive or dead.

When organisms spread from one geographical area to another, as it may occur with the discharge of ballast water, such organisms will only survive, if they are able to reproduce and compete successfully with the species in the new environment. There are no invasive species without reproduction.

The VIDA requests that the US Coast Guard regulation shall be amended by the inclusion of methods that can determine the concentration of organisms in ballast water that are capable of reproduction.

This is good news for manufacturers of ballast water management systems (BWMS) using ultraviolet light for treatment, in particular, and for the testing community in general.