In my opinion MEPC 80: Day 1 Ship’s crew

Barry Parker (Captain) –

The International Maritime Organization’s MEPC 80 meeting kicked off Monday morning at the IMO Headquarters in London, with some delegates attending virtually.

The main task of revising the IMO strategy for decarbonising shipping (reducing greenhouse gases or greenhouse gases) lies in the hands of the Intersessional Working Group on Reducing GHG, chaired by Norwegian Sveinung Oftedal, who met the week before MEPC 80 and do so will continue its deliberations and meet every day separate from the plenary sessions.

By the end of the week, when MEPC 80 concludes, the working group, which has hopefully clarified the basics of the new strategy, will present its findings to the wider assembly.

Brief comments on Monday summarizing progress indicated that the working group was well advanced in setting technical standards for fuels but was still working on economic issues such as who will pay for the transition and how the payments will flow.

In remarks by various delegates at Monday’s MEPC meeting, the idea of ​​a “levy” on fuel, a mechanism to incentivize a switch to lower-carbon (or zero-carbon) fuels, was mentioned several times. Indeed, a report produced late last week by the Intersessional Working Group indicated that some of its participants supported the idea of ​​a universal tax on carbon emissions from marine fuels. Importantly, those participants who supported this approach emphasized that “emissions” must be considered on a “well-to-wake” basis, meaning that the greenhouse gas emissions associated with the production of the fuel as well as the Emissions resulting from the actual combustion of these fuels to generate electricity must be taken into account ships.

MEPC 80 will address issues other than greenhouse gas reduction; These include ballast water treatment (a review of the existing Ballast Water Management Convention), marine litter and marine noise. A topic that has been in the news frequently in recent months, namely ship-to-ship transfers, will also attract attention. The IMO states: “The Committee is expected to discuss a document aimed at raising awareness of the potential environmental risks, consequences and concerns for global marine pollution prevention, liability and compensation regimes associated with the increase in shipping -to sharpen ship-to-ship transfers.” At sea. A draft Assembly resolution is proposed.”

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