European NGO Transport and Environment and various suppliers and shipowners have called on EU leaders to introduce a stronger carbon control system, including for smaller vessels such as OSVs.
The group, which includes T&E, Samskip, ABB and various clean technology providers, wants the European Council, Commission and Parliament to lower the carbon control threshold to include ships below the proposed minimum of 5,000 to 400 GT. GT European Commission’s First Draft Carbon Regulations Shipping. This new, lower limit applies to the EU’s Monitoring, Reporting and Verification (MRV) Regulation, the Emissions Trading System (ETS) Directive and the FuelEU Maritime Regulation.
“Unless we develop an effective legislative framework for small vessels, green shipping at any size will suffer,” the group argued in an open letter.
The exemptions in the Commission’s proposal for the ETS Directive would allow 25 million tonnes of carbon per year from small ships and other exempt vessels to continue, according to T&E. In addition to closing this gap, applying the carbon law to ships up to 400 GT could have positive economic benefits: the EU could boost shipbuilders, which mainly build smaller ships, and benefit from new orders for highly specialized green ships. , the team suggested. Since the average European small ship is 39 years old, there is an opportunity in the near future to encourage these orders and to green the ships in a “very short time frame”.
“The ETS is a significant opportunity to tackle pollution from ships and fund the decarbonisation of shipping. Delays in shipping carbon markets risk giving large and unwarranted subsidies to big businesses, warned Jacob Armstrong, sustainable shipping officer at T&E.
Top image: Two ships in a yard in Hamburg (D Chris / CC BY 2.0)