The EU and China have reacted to US president Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw the US from the Paris climate accord by agreeing to cooperate to ensure aviation and shipping play their part in tackling climate change. T&E has welcomed the agreement, but fears the US withdrawal will slow down progress in shipping. Such a worrying sentiment was felt within the shipping industry, too.
MEPs have called on the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) to ban the highly polluting marine fuel ‘heavy fuel oil’ – sometimes referred to as ‘residual fuel’ – from use in Arctic waters. The full European Parliament wants the IMO’s environment committee to discuss outlawing the use of HFO in the Arctic when it meets in July.
Today’s call by the European Parliament for a ban on the use of heavy-fuel oil (HFO) by ships when sailing in the Arctic should be met with swift action by the International Maritime Organisation, sustainable transport group Transport & Environment (T&E) has said. The IMO’s marine environment protection committee will next meet in July.
MEPs’ proposal to include shipping in the EU emissions trading system (ETS) from 2023, if the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) fails to agree a global measure to reduce shipping emissions, should be a wake-up call for the UN agency, a senior European Commission official has said. The remarks come as EU governments weigh up what’s described as a necessary ‘insurance policy’ in case the IMO again fails to act.
The EU’s Environment Council meets Tuesday to discuss Europe’s emissions trading system. The EU ETS is often described as the “flagship” of Europe’s climate policy and is currently the largest carbon market in the world. However it has been malfunctioning since a systematic oversupply of credits built up as a result of both Europe’s economic crisis and weak ambition in setting the cap when the ETS was first established.
· MEPs also back tightening cap on aviation emissions.Support from ports and cargo owners for last week’s vote by MEPs to include shipping emissions in the EU emissions trading system (ETS) has been sharply criticised by shipowners. The European Community Shipowners' Associations (ECSA) said it ‘deplores’ the shipping industry’s backing for Europe regulating ship CO2 as a ‘first move’ to kick start action at global level. Shipping in Europe has CO2 emissions equal those of the Netherlands.
Just before a crucial vote by MEPs, associations of shippers and cargo owners have called on the European Parliament, Council and Commission to include shipping emissions in the EU emissions trading system (ETS) under a special fund. In two letters sent yesterday, the shipping industry’s customers backed the Parliament environment committee’s proposal to regulate the sector via a Maritime Climate Fund from 2023 “if IMO (the UN’s International Maritime Organisation) does not deliver a global measure to address shipping GHG emissions”.
In a plenary vote on 14 February, the European Parliament will adopt its position on reforms to Europe’s emissions trading system (EU ETS) for the 4th trading period (2021-2030). These reforms aim to fix major issues with EU ETS such as the need for tighter reduction caps and the oversupply of allowances which has depressed the carbon price.