A collaboration between the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute in California, and Sumitomo Heavy Industries in Japan report on a new, cost-effective method for treating ballast water. The method, deoxygenation, involves the removal of oxygen water from ballast water using nitrogen gas. Oxygen levels can be reduced to levels less than 0.5%. While deoxygenation prevents the spread of aquatic invasive species by killing oxygen-dependent organisms, the low oxygen levels also reduce ship corrosion, providing an economic benefit to the shipping industry.
Taburri M, Wasson K, Matsuda M. Ballast water deoxygenation can prevent aquatic introductions while reducing ship corrosion. Biological Conservation, Volume 103, Issue 3, March 2002.