Sydney Harbour Sulphur Cap for Cruise Ships Looming

A new regulatory amendment requiring all cruise ships to use low sulphur fuel (01% of less) while berthed in Sydney Harbour is coming into effect on October 1, GAC reports.

A second stage of the amended regulation, which will require the use of low sulphur fuel (0.1% or less) while in Sydney Harbour (including while berthed) will come into effect from July 1, 2016.

Exceptions from the requirement to use low sulphur fuel are provided in some circumstances, for example, ship safety and emergency situations or technical problems, GAC says.

Ships may seek approval from the New South Wales Environment Protection Authority (EPA) to use alternative methods to achieve an equivalent reduction in sulphur oxide and particulate matter emissions, for example, the use of exhaust scrubbers.

Public consultation on the draft Regulation amendment was held in June 2015. Further consultation will be undertaken with communities in regional NSW ports about the broader application of the low sulphur fuel requirements.

The state government is also assessing possible options for reducing emissions from the broader shipping sector in NSW waters.

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