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Slower ship speeds make massive difference to emissions

More evidence about the significant contribution slower speeds can make to reducing emissions from shipping has come from a new American study. The study reinforces the thinking behind speed limits for ships proposed by the California Air Resources Board, and confirms findings in a T&E study published earlier this year.

VAT on international passenger transport

Sketch of a book (default image for publications

In October 2012 the European Commission launched a public consultation on 'Review of existing legislation on VAT reduced rates'. T&E has been campaigning to abolish the reduced rates for international passenger transport for years due to the harmful competitive distortions caused by those rates and the implicit subsidy it provides for passenger transport, especially in the aviation sector. 

Arctic meltdown

A record number of ships have used the Northern Sea Route, highlighting and worsening the effects of Arctic melting. The number of ships using the Arctic shortcut between Europe and Asia has increased 10 times in the past two years, and this year 46 ships carrying a record 1.26 million tonnes of cargo – about half of it petroleum products – used the route for more months than it has ever been passable.

Monitoring is not tackling! Environmental groups criticise lack of Commission progress to reduce shipping emissions

Environmental groups have criticised a long-awaited Commission announcement on greenhouse gases from shipping. A coalition of NGOs headed by T&E has welcomed forthcoming measures to monitor emissions from maritime transport, but says they should not mask the fact that the EU is taking no action to cut such emissions, despite the presence of numerous cost-effective options for doing so.

NGOs disappointed at new postponement of action to cut shipping emissions

The European Commission has announced today that it will propose, in early 2013, measures to monitor, verify and report on Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions from shipping. This measure will apply to all ships calling at EU ports and could also be the basis for a global approach towards cleaner shipping. This is an important prerequisite to further action and NGOs Transport & Environment and Seas At Risk call on EU states to proceed quickly to implement this measure and ensure that information on ship efficiency is shared transparently.

SOS Arctic: New report highlights environmental threat from increased shipping activities

Shipping activities are set to increase as the melting of Arctic ice accelerates. This will lead to increased emissions which will exacerbate Arctic melting and pose a growing threat to the environment in the region. In a new report published today, entitled ‘Troubled Waters’ (1), sustainable transport campaigners T&E sound the alarm making recommendations on how to reduce the impact of shipping in the Arctic and urging the EU to take serious action to ensure the unique Arctic ecosystem survives.

Troubled Waters - How to protect the Arctic from the growing impact of shipping

As the decline of Arctic sea-ice continues, the prospect of an ice-free Arctic ocean in the near future draws closer. Arctic melting is seen by industry and some governments as an opportunity to develop human and exploitative activities in the region (oil and gas production, mining, shipping, tourism). But while Arctic melting is surely an effect of climate change, it is imperative that it does not become another cause of climate change. This vicious circle threatening the Arctic and the global ecosystems needs to be broken.

Can Europe breathe a little easier with lower-sulphur shipping fuels?

A significant step towards reducing air pollution from ships has moved closer following a vote by MEPs earlier this month to reduce the amount of sulphur allowed in marine fuels. Environmental groups have welcomed the vote, but say it needs to be the first in a programme of action to reduce harmful emissions from ships.

A shipping route through troubled waters?

The melting ice of the Arctic region has made the idea of a shipping route through the North Pole an increasingly realistic possibility, but this has the potential to create massive environmental problems. A group of NGOs, including T&E, has therefore put together a report highlighting the potential impact of an increase in shipping in the Arctic region.

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