This week, the IMO agreed to ban fuel with excessively
high sulphur content on board ships.
was actively supported by Denmark and is now to be finally adopted by the IMO
Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) with a view to entry, says
Danish Maritime Authority.
According to a previous IMO decision, ships’ fuel must
have a maximum sulphur content of 0.5 per cent from 2020, compared to today’s
3.5 per cent limit. The new prohibition, which enjoys wide support from the IMO
member States, green organisations and the industry, will most likely make it
easier to enforce the provisions.
Andreas Nordseth, Director General of the Danish
”The proposal to ban the on-board presence of high sulphur content fuel globally
is a step in the right direction. We are striving to reduce distortional
practices among the various flag States, and this ban will make it easier to
enforce the regulations and, thus, help ensure a level playing field.”
Ships fitted with so-called scrubbers for flue gas
cleaning or any other approved technology will be exempted from the ban, and it
will not apply to fuels merely carried as cargo either.
Agreement on the ban was reached by the IMO
Sub-Committee on Pollution Prevention and Response (PPR). Now the proposal is
up for consideration by the IMO Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC),
which is expected to adopt the ban before the end of 2018; subsequently, the
ban is planned to enter into force in March 2020. The ban is part of wider IMO
efforts to ensure efficient enforcement of the new sulphur provisions – efforts
that will be continued towards 2020.
The proposal has enjoyed wide support in Blue Denmark
since stronger enforcement helps ensure a level playing field for the global industry
and fewer sulphur emissions.
In Denmark, the Danish Environmental Protection Agency
is – together with the Danish Maritime Authority – responsible for enforcing
the sulphur provisions. Both of these authorities have attended this week’s
meeting in London.