Europe debates shipping emissions ahead of MEPC

The European Parliament today called on EU governments to align the 2030 EU climate target with the Paris Agreement and introduce EU measures to cut emissions from aviation and shipping. In a letter sent to Europe’s ministers of transport and environment, the heads of seven political groups of the parliament’s environment committee also demanded greater climate ambition at both IMO and its sister organisation governing aviation.

The environment heads of all the main political groups in the parliament wrote: “There is no reasonable excuse to continue exempting aviation and shipping from the international and EU climate policies.”

Next week the IMO will convene its Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) to debate new measures.

Yesterday the European Community Shipowners’ Associations (ECSA) called upon EU member states to support a global CO2 agenda for shipping

“The shipping industry endorses the Paris agreement on climate change and we are committed to ambitious CO2 emission reductions across the world merchant fleet,” said ECSA President Niels Smedegaard.

Next week’s MEPC will feature a discussion on a global data collection system that will provide information on the emissions from maritime shipping on an annual basis. “We believe that this system should have mandatory application”, ECSA secretary general Patrick Verhoeven said yesterday. “A decision in IMO should come forward in 2016 so that ships can provide the required data as soon as possible.”

ECSA also supports the proposal of its international partner ICS (International Chamber of Shipping) for IMO member states to adopt an intended IMO determined contribution. This would make IMO member states and the shipping industry answerable to the international community, in the same way that governments committed to intended national determined contributions (INDCs).

“The development of an Intended IMO Determined Contribution should be part of a clear work plan and timetable, to be elaborated as of this year,” said Verhoeven.


Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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