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The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS), representing the world’s national shipowners’ associations and over 80 percent of the world merchant fleet at the COP 23 in Bonn, emphasises that the shipping industry supports IMO’s strategy to reduce CO2.

ICS’s vision is to reduce CO2 emissions from shipping to zero, in the second half of the century, Simon Bennett, ICS Director of Policy explained. He continued saying that this can be achieved by using alternative fuels and new propulsion technologies.

Namely, this goal can be completed with batteries or fuel cells using renewable energy and other new technologies such as hydrogen or even something not yet anticipated.

This can be facilitated with IMO Member States adopting an ambitious goal for reducing total emissions from the entire international shipping sector by an agreed percentage by 2050, ICS emphasized. Something that many IMO Member States are already trying to do, with EU and Pacific island nations having jointly proposed that the sector should reduce total CO2 by as much as 70 percent by 2050.

    Mr Bennett commented: “It will be for governments to agree the actual reduction number when they adopt an initial IMO strategy next April. And this is also going to have to address the legitimate concerns of major economies such as China and India about the implications for future trade and their sustainable development.”

However, ICS notes that global access to new alternative fuels won’t be possible for at least another 20 or 30 years.

Despite this, the international shipping sector already appears to have reduced and held its total annual CO2 emissions at about 8 percent below its 2008 peak, ICS reports. This follows the international shipping sector having reduced and held its total annual CO2 emissions at about 8 percent below its 2008 peak.

ICS warns that these latest estimates by third parties will have to be verified by the next official IMO Greenhouse Study in 2019 using the new IMO CO2 Data Collection System.

    Mr. Bennett seemed optimistic about the reduction of hazardous emissions: “A significant increase in marine fuel costs is expected in 2020 due to the mandatory global switch by the entire world fleet to low sulphur fuels. This should greatly incentivise, to the extent this is possible, the further reduction of fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by ships.”


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