The Clean Arctic Alliance, a group of environmental NGOs, is calling on the international community to sign up to the Arctic Commitment, in an effort to spearhead the protection of Arctic communities and ecosystems from risks posed by the use of marine heavy fuel oil (HFO).
The latest members to sign the Arctic Commitment at the Arctic Frontiers conference in Tromsø, Norway are Daniel Skjeldam, CEO of Norwegian cruise, ferry and cargo operator Hurtigruten, and Dr Sian Prior, lead advisor to the Clean Arctic Alliance.
“The Arctic Commitment makes a clear challenge to businesses and organisations – join us and take part in persuading the International Maritime Organization (IMO) that it must phase out the use of HFO in Arctic shipping by 2020,” Prior said.
“This is a real opportunity for shipping companies operating in the Arctic to show leadership, by switching from HFO before such a ban is in place,” she added.
According to the CEO of Hurtigruten, a company which has chosen not to use heavy fuel oil in any of its ships, “the shipping industry must be frontrunners in promoting regulations that will secure sustainable Arctic growth.”
“The debate on HFO is over – now action is needed. Banning the use of heavy fuel oil to power Arctic shipping will not only minimise the risk of spills, but will also help reduce climate-warming emissions in the region,” Christoph Wolff, Managing Director of the European Climate Foundation, said.