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GSF will represent members interests’ at the upcoming IMO Maritime Environment Protection Committee (MEPC), July 3 – 11, 2017 where two most important issues will be the future direction of climate change strategy and the incoming global cap on sulphur used in fuel oil used by ships.

 Climate Change Strategy for Shipping

The previous MEPC agreed a “roadmap” to develop a plan to address greenhouse gas emissions from shipping. In the next MEPC the debate will centre around whether to set an overall objective for maritime shipping emissions in the next 2 years, or wait until the early 2020s once more data becomes available from the new IMO Fuel Consumption Database.  GSF plans to submit a paper to the MEPC and address the Committee, focusing on the need to achieve environmental improvement while minimising trade disruption and supply chain costs. GSF’s main objective is to counter the sustained lobbying campaign by global shipping lines who are seeking agreement by IMO members to adopt some form of “global fuel levy” which, it is believed, would impose costs on shippers while doing very little to reduce climate change emissions.

 Global Sulphur Cap

As reported here the previous MEPC meeting in October 2016 agreed to set 1 January 2020 as the implementation date for a significant reduction in the sulphur content of the fuel oil used by ships. GSF will attend the session and follow the discussion to stress the importance of a global level playing field in order to avoid trade disruptions. It will also keep us updated on the latest research on supply chain impacts and refinery costs which we expect to be presented at the MEPC by research bodies commissioned by the IMP.



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