ICS confident that CO2 objectives can be developed by 2018

At the UNFCCC Climate Conference in Marrakesh the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) said that the recent International Maritime Organization (IMO) agreement on a CO2 Road Map for shipping was” a significant decision giving further impetus to the substantial CO2 reductions that are already being delivered by the global industry”.

At an official UNFCCC side event organised by IMO, ICS Director of Policy and External Relations, Simon Bennett, said that ICS was “very optimistic that initial CO2 reduction objectives can now be developed by IMO for the sector by 2018. The shipping industry thinks these should reflect the spirit and ambition of the Paris Agreement while being appropriate to the circumstances that apply to international shipping – just as the commitments made by governments to UNFCCC reflect the circumstances of different national economies.”

ICS says that the IMO Road Map would build on the mandatory CO2 reduction regulations for shipping already adopted by IMO, ensuring that ships built after 2025 would be at least 30% more efficient.

“The final stage to be enacted by 2023 should establish a global mechanism for ensuring that these initial IMO commitments – which the industry wants to see agreed by 2018 – will actually be delivered”, said Bennett. ICS says this IMO mechanism could potentially include a legally binding Market Based Measure. “This remains very controversial and is not yet universally supported throughout the shipping industry. But if this is what governments eventually decide, the clear preference of the majority of the industry would be for a global levy based on fuel consumption”, Bennett said.

ICS noted that the international shipping sector reduced its total CO2 emissions by more than 10% between 2007 and 2012, despite an increase in maritime trade – while the rest of the world economy, even taking account of the commitments made in Paris – will probably continue increasing emissions at least until the 2030s.

“The shipping industry fully recognises that society expects more, and we therefore think it is vital that IMO Member States agree some truly ambitious CO2 reduction commitments by 2018.” said Bennett.