ECSA: Use EU MBM revenues for maritime R&D fund

The European Community Shipowners’ Associations (ECSA) says a fund created from the proceeds of any European market-based measures could also help in bridging the price gap between new and conventional bunker fuels.

The deadline for the European Commission’s public consultation period on the proposed EU emissions trading system (ETS) for shipping closed on 5 February and in June the Commission is expected to announce how the ETS will be implemented. Phase in for the ETS could happen as soon as January 2022.

In a statement issued today (15 February), ECSA also suggests that the EC should require marine fuel suppliers to include a certain percentage of low- and zero carbon fuels in their offering by introducing sub-targets and a higher multiplier for low- and zero-carbon fuels under Europe’s Renewable Energy Directive (RED). 

ECSA also notes that a fuel standard as a requirement for ships instead of fuel suppliers under the FuelEU Maritime proposal ‘would risk failing to deliver emissions reductions and would be challenging to enforce’.

‘A fuel standard should be geared towards fuel suppliers and not ships, which are merely the fuel users. This is especially relevant and should be taken into account by the European Commission under the upcoming FuelEU Maritime proposal, said ECSA Secretary General, Martin Dorsman.

‘We are quite concerned that should the FuelEU Maritime put forward a fuel standard as a requirement for ships, such a measure would seriously disrupt the bunkering market and would be challenging to enforce. More importantly, it would fail to incentivise energy efficiency improvements, be they technical (wind propulsion assistance, heat recovery system, hull and propeller optimisation etc.) or operational (route optimisation, slow steaming etc.).’

ECSA’s standpoint is that a global approach must be the cornerstone of the EU’s policies and any regional measures would risk undermining the international negotiations at the IMO level.

Lesley Bankes-Hughes

Lesley Bankes-Hughes