More efforts needed globally to reduce emissions from shipping, say MEPs

The European Parliament’s Environment Committee has expressed its concern with ‘insufficient progress’ in the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to reduce emissions from the maritime sector internationally.

On 29 October, the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety Committee debated the reduction of emissions from the maritime sector with Adina-Ioana Vălean, European Commissioner for Transport.

Commissioner Vălean briefed Members on the most recent developments in the IMO concerning the 75th session of the Marine Environment Protection Committee (IMO MEPC 75) which will take place online 16 – 20 November 2020.

According to a statement issued by European Parliament, the Commissioner underlined the ‘high ambition’ of the EU and the importance of leading by example but she also said that since the maritime sector is a global sector, long-term solutions will also have to be found globally.

Vălean lowered expectations for the upcoming MEPC 75 partly because it will be difficult to achieve progress in online meetings and said she did not expect major progress in the next 6-12 months by the main global players postponing important decisions to MEPC 76 in 2021.

Several MEPs  are reported to have repeated their disappointment at the ‘insufficient progress’ in the IMO to reduce emissions from shipping. They have previously also requested the Commission to examine the overall environmental integrity of the measures decided upon by the IMO, including the targets under the Paris Agreement.

Several MEPs welcomed the Commissioners confirmation that it will propose to include shipping in the EU ETS as requested by Parliament while others requested clarification on how the Commission intends to improve energy efficiency for the maritime sector.

Rhys Berry

Rhys Berry