CO2 control measures high on IMO agenda

13 Oct 2010

The IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) - 61st session was held recently at IMO’s headquarters in London.

The reduction of greenhouse gases (GHGs) from international shipping was the main focus of MEPC 61, which among other things considered the approval of technical and operational measures to reduce CO2 emissions from international shipping (specifically the Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) and the Ship Energy Efficiency Management Plan (SEEMP)) as mandatory measures, possibly as amendments to MARPOL Annex VI Regulations for the prevention of air pollution from ships, with the type and size of vessel to which they shall apply also to be agreed.

Additionally, the Committee discussed at length further work concerning market-based measures, including the possible development of a mandatory IMO instrument. A working group on GHG issues convened during the session to refine the regulatory text implementing the technical and operational measures as mandatory standards, as well as the formulas and guidelines supporting the regulatory text.

The MEPC considered the outcome of two inter-sessional working groups, one of which progressed work on the contemplated technical and operational measures to enhance energy efficiency in ships’ operations while the other, consisting of a group of experts, conducted a feasibility study and impact assessment of a number of proposed market-based measures.

Finally, the committee considered the issue of a reduction target and whether the international maritime sector should be subject to an explicit emission ceiling (cap) comprising the entire world fleet of merchant vessels.

MEPC 61 also addressed issues relating to the implementation of the International Convention for the Control and Management of Ships’ Ballast Water and Sediments, 2004 and reiterated the need for ratification of the Convention to achieve its entry into force. To date, 26 states with an aggregate merchant shipping tonnage of 24.66% of the world total have ratified the Convention. The Convention will enter into force twelve months after the date on which not fewer than 30 states, the combined merchant fleets of which constitute not less than 35% of the gross tonnage of the world's merchant shipping, have become parties to it.

Links to related companies and recent articles ...

International Maritime Organization

view more