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BC Ferries

Providing Antifouling and Anticorrosion Solutions To Two of The Largest Ferry Companies in North America

Did you know that the global ferry industry is similar in size to the commercial airline industry? They transport approximately 2.1 billion passengers per year, plus 250 million vehicles and 32 million trailers!

Those are some astounding numbers! But, if you live in a coastal town or on an island as we do, you are acutely aware of how ferries play a prominent role in our personal and business life. Ferries provide vital transport to the Doctor, entertainment, and friends. Plus, that much-needed connection to the mainland. Furthermore. they transport our goods, allow for tourism to flourish in our community, and enable us to enjoy a stunning geographical location, while still easily conduct business.


Based in North Saanich, Vancouver Island, our community has the privilege of being serviced by two of the largest ferry companies in North America (one can argue they are among the top 5 globally).  Daily we watch BC Ferries vessels as they sail through our waters and we welcome the Washington State Ferries as they connect our Canadian community with the US. With 440 departures daily, we are so proud that we have partnered with these fantastic operators since the 1960s and have provided antifouling and anticorrosion solutions for more than 60 years.  Not to mention keeping them free of marine fouling such as barnacles, mussels, and tubeworms as they move through the Salish Sea and Puget Sound. In addition, we assist with protecting the environment, lower energy costs, and combat noise pollution.

Washington State Ferries (WSF) is the largest ferry operator in the United States and the second-largest vehicular ferry system globally. Operating an automobile and passenger ferry service.  Their fleet includes ten routes serving 20 terminals located around Puget Sound and in the San Juan Islands, Washington. WSF boasts a fleet of 23 vessels, carrying 24.2 million passengers yearly.

WSF relies on MARELCO™ Marine Growth and Corrosion Protection System (MGPS), known as MARELCO™ Guardianas their antifouling and anticorrosion solution.  The Guardian provides antifouling protection and corrosion control.  As standard MARELCO™ anodes are made from 99.9% pure extruded copper, aluminum, or iron and are formed to any configuration allowing flexibility positioning and arranging anode locations. We continue to improve and innovate our product in our manufacturing facility here on Vancouver Island. It allows us to continue to provide a superior product to our customers.

Connecting Vancouver Island, the Gulf Islands, and many coastal communities of British Columbia is the British Columbia Ferry Corporation. Known affectionately as BC Ferries. BC Ferries’s first route was commissioned in 1960 and was established right here between our very own Swartz Bay (just north of our EMCS manufacturing facility) and Tsawwassen on the mainland, using just two vessels. One year after commissioning, EMCS partnered with the BC Ferries to provide their antifouling and anticorrosion solutions. This extraordinary service provider is the largest ferry operator in Canada. Operating 36 vessels with a total passenger and crew capacity of over 27,000.  Not to mention serving 47 locations on the B.C. coast.

EMCS continues to provide MARELCO™ Guardian (MGPS) to the entire BC Ferry Fleet. However, in 1999 BC Ferries began testing our eco-friendly low-frequency hydrosonic antifouling solution on several vessels.  This low-frequency hydrosonic system works by using small emitters. The emitters work by producing a low volume, low-frequency audio signal transmitted through the vessel surfaces that need protection. Recent research has found that these emitters do not add to marine noise pollution or affect marine life. However, this frequency will, in turn, make the settling/attachment surface or environment undesirable for organisms, such as barnacles and mussels. This system has proved so successful for BC Ferries that it was specified in the design and installed on their new build battery hybrid-electric Island Class ferries.


Biofouling and corrosion are significant challenges most marine vessels face.  They lead to damage and the shutdown of critical systems. Increase vessel drag and decreased fuel efficiency.  It can create higher emissions and considerable maintenance costs. We are the inventors of the first electrolytic MGPS and specialists in our field.  Our experienced technicians provide over 120 years of combined experience. This allows us to be confident that we can offer any service provider the knowledge and security that the MARELCO™  suite of antifouling and corrosion solutions will efficiently lengthen the time between service intervals, extending the vessel’s life in the fleet, and increase fuel efficiency while decreasing emissions and maintenance costs.

In addition to the over  60 years of experience providing world-class solutions to two of the largest ferry companies in North America, EMCS provides antifouling solutions to many other Ferry transport systems in North America, in both tropical and colder water temperatures and with different species of biofouling.

Want to know more about MARELCO™ Contact us today.


InterFerry – Ferry Facts

BC Ferries

Washington State Ferries

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