The European Community Shipowners’ Associations (ECSA) has supported the European Commission’s newly published communication on a European Strategy for low-emission mobility which points out that all transport sectors, including maritime shipping, need to contribute towards reducing the EU’s greenhouse gas emissions and air pollutants.
The communication calls for further work on the introduction of an “Energy Efficiency Design Index” for new ships engaged in international shipping.
The EU also affirmed its commitment to securing a mandatory global agreement for the collection and reporting of greenhouse gas emissions from international shipping in the International Maritime Organisation later this year.
The measures need to be complemented soon by an international agreement on an emission reduction objective for the shipping sector, according to the communication, which should be followed by measures to mitigate emissions in the international maritime sector.
The EU already has in place legislation that will, as from 2018, require ships that use EU ports to monitor, report and verify emissions. The EU may align this legislation in the event of an international agreement on a global system.
In relation to air pollutants, the Commission supports further measures by the International Maritime Organisation to reduce these emissions, such as the designation of additional Emission Control Areas and the implementation of a global cap on sulphur in fuel in 2020.
“We believe that shipping obviously must be part of the global solutions to limit the increase in the global temperature as we clearly are also a global contributor to the carbon emissions,” said ECSA Secretary General Patrick Verhoeven.
“We fully agree with the aim of the EU to secure a robust and mandatory global agreement for the collection and reporting of greenhouse gas emissions from international shipping in the International Maritime Organisation as mentioned in the Commission’s communication. We also look forward to seeing a proposal to align the EU MRV Regulation with the global system. Finally, we support the Commission in ensuring that IMO timely delivers on the next steps. We believe that a global agreement is both needed and possible.”
Shipping is today one of the most energy-efficient modes of transport, ECSA said. The sector transports approximately 90% of world trade and is only responsible for 2,2% of the global CO2 emissions. However, a recent IMO study predicts that shipping’s CO2 emissions may increase between 50 and 250% in the worst case scenario by 2050 as the traffic increases, unless preventive measures are taken.