After a decade of talks, there is consensus at the International Maritime Organization to put a price on shipping emissions – the next question is how high
Countries have agreed on the need to put a carbon price on shipping emissions after more than a decade of resistance, which campaigners have hailed as a “major breakthrough”.
The International Maritime Organization, (IMO) broke down a deadlock last week on mid-term measures that would decarbonise the industry.
The meeting concluded that there was consensus to price shipping emissions “as part of a basket of mid-term measures,” according to a Summary by the University Maritime Advisory Services, which is partnered with University College London’s (UCL) Energy Institute. There was general support for adopting a “well-to-wake” approach and pricing emissions from fuel production to consumption onboard a ship, UMAS said.
“[Pricing shipping emissions]This is not a new concept to IMO, but previous attempts have failed to make it work. It is therefore a huge step forward that there is now consensus on this,” said Tristan Smith, director of UMAS.
These market-based measures include technical measures like introducing fuel standards, as well as economic ones like establishing a global carbon tax. These will be discussed at a meeting of the IMO’s environment committee (MEPC) next month.
“Pricing needs to be complemented with a mandatory measure like a fuel standard, but there is now a much improved potential for strong IMO incentivisation of shipping’s decarbonisation,” Smith said.
Responsible for nearly Global emissions account for 3%Ships emit approximately one omission Every year, there are billions of tonnes CO2. Shipping emissions are projected at a staggering 94 percent without further action. 90-130%They will be at their 2008 levels by 2020.
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Major emerging economies have resisted the introduction of carbon taxes in the past. A proposal was made by Pacific Island nations to establish a carbon price of $100/tonne for bunker fuels. We received only a shaky support from the EU countriesThe US.
Last week, however, all EU countries and the US spoke in favor of carbon pricing. The UK, New Zealand, and the Bahamas supported the measure for the first-time at the meeting.
“There can finally be no doubt we will put a carbon price on shipping,” Aoife O’Leary, a long-time IMO observer and head of Opportunity Green, a non-profit focusing on international climate issues, told Climate Home News.
The price must be high enough to transition to zero-emission fuels quickly, as well as offering a mechanism to support developing countries, O’Leary said. Countries must move to next month’s MEPC with “ambition, equity and urgency,” she said.
“The IMO meeting last week is a major breakthrough,” said Diane Gilpin, CEO of the Smart Green Shipping Alliance, which develops tech solutions to help the industry decarbonise. “Obviously there’s a lot more detail to agree but in our experience ship owners are moving to the shadow of the whip.”
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The Marshall Islands and Solomon Islands have proposed a carbon price of $100 a tonne on bunker fuels, while the world’s biggest container shipping company Maersk a call forTo encourage the industry to switch over to cleaner fuels, a $150/t levy was implemented.
But the shipping industry’s trade association has previously supported a levy of just $2 a tonne of fuel to fund research and development of clean shipping technology. This translates into a carbon price at $0.64/t.
Progress at the IMO came as the European Parliament approved its Fit For 55 package, which includes incorporating shipping in the bloc’s emissions trading scheme (ETS).
This means that all ships are nowNo matter what flag the goods are flying, transporting them to and from the EU will be subjected to emissions taxes. To cover all emissions from EU-bound voyages, ships will need to purchase carbon allowances. This includes half of the emissions from international voyages that originate or end in an EU port. Three quarters (75%) of the revenue generated from the auctioning of allowances will be put into an Ocean Fund to support the industry’s decarbonisation efforts.
“We need ambitious action at every level if we are to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement,” said O’Leary.
“The IMO has only given provisional agreement to a carbon price, which hopefully will move ambitiously forward but it is definitely not at the stage where it could be said that it will achieve a reduction in shipping emissions in line with 1.5C on its own,” she said.
Source: Climate Change News