The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) is representing the world’s national shipowners’ associations and over 80% of the world merchant fleet at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP 23) in Bonn this week. Its message is the International Maritime Organization should lead shipping towards zero emissions in a couple of generations from now. ICS has also come out in favour of emission targets proposed by Japan.
The chamber’s director of policy, Simon Bennett explained: “ICS has a vision of zero CO2 emissions from shipping in the second half of the century. We are confident this will be achievable with alternative fuels and new propulsion technologies.”
ICS says its vision might be delivered with batteries or fuel cells using renewable energy, other new technologies such as hydrogen or even something not yet anticipated.
In the meantime, the shipping industry has proposed that IMO member states should adopt a “suitably ambitious” goal for reducing total emissions from the entire international shipping sector by an agreed percentage by 2050.
While many nations have set targets, ICS is increasingly aligning itself with proposals made by Japan, an archipelago that boasts one of the top three merchant fleets in the world.
“Japan has set out in detail to IMO how a 50% total cut by 2060 might be achieved. In view of projections for future trade growth, an objective in this range, while still incredibly ambitious, therefore seems more realistic,” Bennett said.
Whatever is decided, ICS believes that the entire world fleet is unlikely to enjoy global access to new alternative fuels for at least another 20 or 30 years.
Splash is carrying reports from Bonn all week.