FuelEU Maritime marks the ‘beginning of the end’ for dirty fuels in shipping Ship’s crew

From Nick Savvides (The Loading Star) –

Shipping, trucking and environmental groups have welcomed the world’s first law requiring ships to use sustainable fuel.

After being approved by the European Parliament and Council yesterday, the FuelEU maritime law will force shipping to use green fuels from 2025, with a review of the legislation due in 2028.

“FuelEU Maritime will help decarbonise the maritime transport sector by capping the annual greenhouse gas intensity of the energy consumed by a ship,” said the European Commission.

In addition, the regulation requires container ships to use shore power or a zero-emissions alternative at a berth to protect local communities.

Greenhouse gas reductions begin with a 2% decrease from 2025, with a 6% decrease by 2030, increasing to 14.5% in 2035, 31% from 2040, and 62% and 80% in 2045 and 2050, respectively .

FuelEU is the second element of the EU’s plan to decarbonise maritime transport, after agreeing last year to include maritime transport in its Emissions Trading Scheme.

Jim Corbett, Director of Environment for the World Shipping Council in Europe, said: “I am pleased to see that the regulation assesses fuels for their GHG performance throughout their life cycle. The WSC has been working with the parties on effective, technology-neutral regulation that will help advance the supply of alternative fuels and ensure real reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.”

The carrier’s representative, Nicolette van der Jagt, general manager at Clecat, said The loading star: “This is an important step towards decarbonising shipping through the increased use of renewable and low-carbon fuels. It will ensure that the shipping sector meets climate targets and gradually becomes less dependent on highly polluting heavy fuel oil.”

She added: “The agreement now gives the shipping sector and suppliers some clear guidance on the fuels that can be used.”

Corbett agreed with Clecat, saying: “FuelEU Maritime is helping to scale that demand in Europe. The agreement (yesterday) gives shipping companies the clarity they need to move beyond innovation and leadership and make further investments to support the transition to zero greenhouse gas fuels.”

He said liner shipping has already made progress towards meeting its climate targets and is trying to increase demand for low-carbon and zero-carbon fuels.

Delphine Gozillon, Transport & Environment (T&E) Sustainable Shipping Officer, said in a rare instance of agreement between shipping and environmental groups: “The decision marks the beginning of the end of dirty fuels in shipping. The EU is leading the way with the most ambitious package of green shipping laws ever passed. This success should inspire other countries to do the same.”

Despite this, T&E warned that there are currently few options in terms of sustainable fuels for deep-sea shipping and that “loopholes” in legislation “pose the risk of allowing biofuels and low-carbon fuels through the back door”. The environmental campaign group has urged the EU to “fix these” when it revises the law in 2028.

In addition, shippers have expressed their views Issue that CO2 charges could be introduced by shipping companies via the International Maritime Organization before shipping companies have to pay these charges themselves. This legislation should help allay those fears.

But not everyone in the maritime industry was enthusiastic. Knut Ørbeck-Nilssen, CEO of DNV for shipping, said at the CMA conference in the US: “New fuels and infrastructure will be delayed and in short supply”. He said he doesn’t think the industry needs to scale back its decarbonisation ambitions but rather seems to be moving away from LNG, adding: ‘It’s really important that we do what can be done now rather than fantastic fuel to wait in the future. ”

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