19 April 2016

[190416.EN.BIZ] International Chamber of Shipping Favours Stringent IMO Regulations

THE International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) has made a number of submissions to address the need to reduce the sector's CO2 emissions, focus on problems with the implementation of the IMO Ballast Water Management Convention, and the need for an immediate IMO decision on whether ships will have to use 0.5 per cent sulphur fuel in 2020.

ICS submissions come ahead of this year's International Maritime Organisation's Environment Committee (MEPC) meeting, reported London's Tanker Operator.

The ICS explained that its immediate priority is to help ensure that the new global CO2 data collection system is adopted by IMO as soon as possible. This will then facilitate the possible development of additional CO2 reduction measures.

ICS secretary general, Peter Hinchliffe, explained; "The data global system now before the MEPC is a workable compromise between governments primarily interested in data on fuel consumption and CO2 emissions and those that wish to collect additional information, for example on so called transport work."

In a separate submission to the meeting, ICS responded to the Paris Agreement on climate change with a radical proposal that IMO should develop an Intended IMO Determined Contribution for CO2 reduction on behalf of the sector.

However, ICS emphasised that with the Paris Agreement international shipping should not be expected to make the same level of CO2 commitments as developed economies.

In a submission - made jointly with Intertanko - ICS explained how the BWM Convention's entry into force expected by the end of 2017 will present ship operators with a major challenge because of the expected lack of shipyard capacity needed to retrofit the new treatment equipment.

ICS said that many shipowners have understandably delayed fitting equipment, due to a lack of certainty as to whether it will be regarded as fully compliant.

ICS will also explain to governments the problems created by the different approval regimes that have been adopted by the US and the need, so far as possible, to make the IMO guidelines compatible with the US approach, especially with respect to defining what is a "non-viable" marine organism and the test methods used for approving ultra-violet systems in ballast water treatment systems.

As for the upcoming sulphur cap, the MARPOL Convention requires that ships outside of emission control areas must use fuel containing no more than 0.5 per cent sulphur in 2020, but leaves open the possibility of postponement until 2025, depending on the outcome of a study into the availability of compliant fuel currently being conducted by IMO.

Source : HKSG.

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