Key Issues at Stake at the 69th Session of the IMO Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 69)

15-04-2016

Despite efficiency improvements, CO2 emissions from international shipping are projected to be six times higher in 2050 than in 1990. At the Paris climate conference, countries agreed to limit climate change to well below 2°C. Without considerable contributions of the shipping sector to global mitigation efforts this goal will be much harder to achieve. In 2011, the IMO adopted two efficiency measures to address greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions: the Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) sets compulsory energy efficiency standards for new ships built after 2013, and the Ship Energy Efficiency Management Plan (SEEMP) requires ships to develop a plan to monitor and possibly improve their energy efficiency; shipping was the first sector to set global efficiency standards; earlier efforts to establish a Market-based Mechanism (MBM) have not been successful to date and are still in limbo. The main issues at stake at MEPC 69 are the review of the EEDI target values, the potential adoption of a GHG data collection system and proposals for a work programme geared to determining a fair share for international shipping in global GHG mitigation efforts. Particularly the outcome of the latter will reveal the extent to which IMO Member States consider the Paris Agreement as a mandate to enhance GHG mitigation efforts under the IMO. It is recommended that the ENVI delegation use opportunities such as bilateral meetings with delegations from other countries, informal conversations or the side events to promote the adoption of an ambitious data collection system and to highlight the importance of a work programme geared to determining international shipping’s fair share in global GHG mitigation efforts.

Despite efficiency improvements, CO2 emissions from international shipping are projected to be six times higher in 2050 than in 1990. At the Paris climate conference, countries agreed to limit climate change to well below 2°C. Without considerable contributions of the shipping sector to global mitigation efforts this goal will be much harder to achieve. In 2011, the IMO adopted two efficiency measures to address greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions: the Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) sets compulsory energy efficiency standards for new ships built after 2013, and the Ship Energy Efficiency Management Plan (SEEMP) requires ships to develop a plan to monitor and possibly improve their energy efficiency; shipping was the first sector to set global efficiency standards; earlier efforts to establish a Market-based Mechanism (MBM) have not been successful to date and are still in limbo. The main issues at stake at MEPC 69 are the review of the EEDI target values, the potential adoption of a GHG data collection system and proposals for a work programme geared to determining a fair share for international shipping in global GHG mitigation efforts. Particularly the outcome of the latter will reveal the extent to which IMO Member States consider the Paris Agreement as a mandate to enhance GHG mitigation efforts under the IMO. It is recommended that the ENVI delegation use opportunities such as bilateral meetings with delegations from other countries, informal conversations or the side events to promote the adoption of an ambitious data collection system and to highlight the importance of a work programme geared to determining international shipping’s fair share in global GHG mitigation efforts.