Environmental organizations and global shipping associations have called for an explicit prohibition on the carriage of non-compliant marine fuels once the global 0.5% sulphur cap comes into force in 2020.
In a joint statement issued ahead of a critical IMO meeting next month, groups including BIMCO, the International Chamber of Shipping, the World Shipping Council, the Cruise Lines International Association and the WWF Global Arctic Programme, have asserted that a carriage ban would help to ensure uniform enforcement of the sulphur cap.
“To secure the intended environmental and health benefits, the organizations say it is of utmost importance that enforcement of this standard is efficient and robust globally,” the statement says.
“Any failure by governments to ensure consistent implementation and enforcement could also lead to serious market distortion and unfair competition.”
From 1 January 2020, the maximum permitted sulphur content of marine fuel will be reduced from 3.5% to 0.5%. Unless a ship is using an approved equivalent compliance method, there should be no reason for it to carry non-compliant fuels for combustion on board.
A number of international associations representing the global shipping industry, as well as the Cook Islands and Norway, have already submitted proposals to IMO to prohibit the carriage of non-complaint fuels.
The proposal for the ban will be considered by the next IMO sub committee on pollution prevention and response from 5 to 9 February.