The historic agreement includes a net zero target by or around 2050, as also proposed by the industry, and ambitious indicative checkpoints for 2030 and 2040.
“Global measures for our global industry are the sine qua non for tackling climate change. We are firmly committed to the decarbonisation of our sector. We, thus, strongly support the recent adoption at the IMO of more ambitious goals”, stated Melina Travlos, President of Union of Greek Shipowners (UGS).
The Cyprus Chamber of Shipping also welcomed the decisions taken at IMO's MEPC 80 meeting. The Chamber participated at MEPC80, through its Marine manager, Alexandros Josephides, and described the strategy agreed as "ambitious" saying "the real challenge now starts".
"Developing the measures that will see our industry reach both the set 2030 and 2040 checkpoint targets and the overall 2050 net-zero GHG emissions target, will require hard work and expert input to ensure that, while the measures will achieve the targets, at the same time they will also be pragmatic and implementable to allow the shipping industry to continue to serve the world economy and global progress on the way to achieving the 2050 target," said the Chamber.
The UGS stresses availability of alternative drop-in fuels that are safe and fit-for-purpose will be vital in enabling the existing fleet to achieve the revised decarbonisation pathway, especially given the short time to the 2030 checkpoint, whilst continuing its key role in the smooth operation of global trade. The availability and distribution of these alternative fuels and technologies will depend mainly on multiple out-of-sector stakeholders like fuel producers and suppliers, engine manufacturers, shipyards, ports and others.
The UGS also stresses that as a parallel step, it is imperative IMO ensures the transition to alternative fuels and technologies is safe for the ships and their seafarers and also that it urgently adopts a levy-based economic measure regarding GHG emissions, alongside the simple, goal-based fuel standard as proposed by the industry. This will be a practical method which is necessary in order to help reduce the cost gap between conventional and alternative low-carbon fuels and without which their availability and utilisation will not be satisfactory.
“Shipping, as always, stands ready to embrace technological innovation, once adequately developed and matured. Hence, we call on governments and all relevant stakeholders to support the IMO’s revised GHG strategy by ensuring that the necessary safe fuels and become available globally in sufficient quantities within the required timeframe,” said Travlos.
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