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Commission makes timid first steps towards controlling ship emissions

The European Commission has published today a proposal to monitor, report and verify (MRV) on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from shipping. This measure will apply to all ships calling at EU ports and could to set the baseline for an eventual measure to actually require emissions reductions. Shipping is responsible for over 3% of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and these will double by 2020 if nothing is done to curb them.

Visual tool highlights growth in new Arctic shipping route

The Jefferson Institute, an American research and education body, has developed an interactive visualisation to highlight the growing use of the Northern Sea Route, an Arctic passage that has been opened up by global warming and whose use is growing to the detriment of the marine environment. 

IMO threatens a ‘shameful’ delay on NOx limits

A central element of efforts to tackle pollution from ships has suddenly been threatened to be set back by five years. Last week, the environment committee of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) proposed to delay a measure limiting nitrogen oxides (NOx) emissions in specifically designated sea areas, from 2016 to 2021. T&E described the delay, which took most observers by surprise, as ‘a disaster’ and ‘a shameful act by the IMO’ that punishes those who have invested in cleaner technology.

IMO opens the door to reduce shipping emissions

Today the member states of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) agreed on a Resolution on technology cooperation, which was delaying the implementation of standards to improve the energy efficiency of new ships. This resolution had been in discussion for two years and was hindering any progress on other measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from ships.

IMO U-turn jeopardises citizens' health in EU Year of Air

The International Maritime Organisation (IMO) today decided to postpone the entry into force of nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions limits for ship engines from 2016 to 2021. Environmental NGOs Transport & Environment (T&E) and Seas at Risk, founding members of the IMO observer organisation Clean Shipping Coalition, condemn IMO’s decision and now call on the EU to adopt its own NOx limits for cleaner air.

'Decoding' the Polar Code

In this second of two blog posts, policy officer for clean shipping, Antoine Kedzierski looks back at the origins of the Polar Code, the international code of safety for shipping in Polar waters, the recent International Maritime Organisation (IMO) decision on the environmental chapter and what a robust Polar Code should look like.

Monitoring of bunker fuel consumption

Sketch of a book (default image for publications

Monitoring of fuel consumption and GHG emissions from international shipping is currently under discussion at the EU level as well as at the IMO. There are several approaches to monitoring, each with different characteristics. Important differences exist with regards to the costs of the equipment, operational costs, the accuracy of the measurements, and the potential to monitor emissions of gases other than CO2. Moreover, some approaches offer more opportunities to improve the operational fuel-efficiency of ships and fit better to possible future policies than others.The following report discusses these approaches.

A robust Polar Code is more important than ever

Opinion by Antoine Kedzierski. It would be wrong to say that nobody benefits from global warming. Some people may end up doing quite well out of it because of the changes it brings. And one of these changes is that melting ice in the Arctic opens up new trans-polar shipping routes. Ideally, they wouldn’t exist, because global temperatures would have stayed within acceptable levels. But because the Arctic is already warming twice as rapidly as the rest of the globe, these routes do exist.

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