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MEPC 74: ‘Little or no serious discussion’ on GHG reductions

20 May 2019

Members of the Clean Shipping Coalition, European campaign groups Transport & Environment and Seas at Risk, say they are appalled by the complete lack of ambition shown at a recent meeting to discuss emissions reductions for the shipping industry by 2050.

The 74th session IMO Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 74) was held in London between 13 to 17 May.

They noted the meeting being plagued by procedural and process issues with little or no serious discussion on the merits of the various proposals for measures to deliver immediate emissions reductions before 2023, which have been submitted over the past 6 months.

“The sound of deckchairs being rearranged was deafening at IMO this week,” said John Maggs of Seas At Risk and President of the Clean Shipping Coalition.

“Faced with demands for urgent action to tackle the climate emergency, the IMO became a parody of itself with those that never wanted shipping climate action in the first place ensuring little or no progress was made.”

“Shipping is the only sector not subject to binding climate regulation and its remaining climate budget is fast being used up,’ said Bill Hemmings, aviation and shipping director at Transport & Environment.

Speed regulation is the most effective measure on the table, fortunately it will go forward for discussion at the next session. We have no time to lose, IMO procrastination must stop.”

The shipping sector emits approximately 3% of the annual global CO2 emissions. Under a business-as-usual scenario, and if other sectors of the economy reduce emissions in line with Paris Agreement, shipping could represent some 10% of global GHG emissions by 2050.

IMO adopted a strategy to decarbonise shipping by 2050, and as a mid-term goal, to reduce the carbon intensity of the sector by at least 40% by 2030 compared to 2008.

In order to achieve these targets, it committed to implement immediate measures to achieve GHG reductions before 2023. If IMO is to achieve this goal, a decision on such measures must be taken by summer 2020.

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Photo credit: International Maritime Organization
Published: 21 May, 2019


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