The International Maritime Organization (IMO) Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 73) begun a busy session on Monday after the opening address by Secretary-General Kitack Lim.
Hideaki Saito chaired the session by moving ahead work to deliver the IMO initial strategy on the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from ships, leading the committee to approve a programme of follow-up actions. A working group on GHG reduction will continue discussions, including the scope of the fourth IMO GHG study.
On Monday, the committee will also address the implementation of the 0.50% sulphur limit when the limit for sulphur in fuel oil used on board ships operating outside designated emission control areas will be reduced to 0.50% m/m (mass by mass) from 1 January 2020.
“MEPC 73 is expected to approve ship implementation planning guidance as well as best practice guides for Member States/coastal States and for fuel oil suppliers,” it says.
“The committee is also expected to adopt an amendment to prohibit the carriage of non-compliant fuel oil (except when ships are fitted with measures such as exhaust gas cleaning systems or scrubbers).”
The issue of marine plastic litter will also be discussed. The committee is expected to develop and agree an action plan to address the issue of marine plastic litter from shipping, in the context of 2030 Sustainable Development Goal 14 (SDG 14) on the oceans.
A number of proposals have been put forward for consideration, covering issues such as a proposed study on the state of marine plastic litter; looking into the availability and adequacy of port reception facilities; looking at marking and retrieval of fishing gear; reporting the loss of fishing gear and containers; facilitating the delivery of retrieved fishing gear or passively-fished waste to shore facilities; reviewing training; raising awareness; and strengthening international cooperation.
Photo credit: International Maritime Organization
Published: 23 October, 2018
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