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2020: IMO developing guidelines on fuel blends, types

08 Jun 2018

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) will be developing guidelines on fuel blends, types as part of preparations for the 0.5% sulphur cap of marine fuels in 2020, says its Secretary-General Kitack Lim.

“The important thing now is to ensure consistent implementation of the requirement,” he said at the Cyprus Shipping Chamber Annual General Meeting.

“IMO is currently developing relevant implementation guidelines which will look at a range of issues including the impact on fuel and machinery systems resulting from new fuel blends or fuel types – including the safety aspects – and issues surrounding mechanisms for verification and control.”

He noted the adoption of the Marine Environment Protection Committee of an Initial Strategy for reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) from international shipping as a “development of historic global significance”.

“For the first time, there is a clear policy commitment to a complete phase out of GHG emissions from ships, a specific linkage to the Paris Agreement and a series of clear levels of ambition including at least a 50% cut in emissions from the sector by 2050,” he states.

“I cannot stress enough how important this is in political terms. IMO is not a body that can simply issue directives. It needs to bring its Member States together in agreement, or as near to agreement as possible.”

Moving forward, he stressed on the need for the shipping industry to work together to meet the forthcoming sulphur cap deadline of 2020.

“The first of January 2020 has been set as the date for a significant reduction in the sulphur content of the fuel oil used by ships, from the 3.5% limit currently in place to 0.50%,” he says.

“This is another landmark decision for both the environment and for human health. It demonstrates a clear commitment by IMO Member States to ensuring shipping meets its environmental obligations.”

Related: MEPC 72: IMO Secretary-General makes closing remarks
Related: IBIA: IMO to continue 2020 preparations in July
Related: IBIA: Proposal to mandate ISO sulphur test methods to be discussed
Related: IBIA notes bunker fuel-related issues on MEPC 72 agenda
Related: IBIA: IMO targets high sulphur fuel carriage ban by 2020

Photo credit: International Maritime Organization
Published: 8 June, 2018


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