COP 21: Carbon War Room statement on agreement

Associations, Climate, Emissions, Environment, Oceanology, Oil Spill, Pollution — By on December 13, 2015 at 4:25 PM
Paris: ...signs of Climate Change...

Paris: …signs of Climate Change…

On the outcome of the recent COP 21 negotiations in Paris, Victoria Stulgis, Senior Associate, Carbon War Room commented:
“Despite calls to regulate shipping from the European Parliament, Denmark and the Marshall Islands, as well as multiple industry leaders including Maersk, it is disappointing to learn that shipping has not been included in COP21’s global climate change agreement.

“Shipping contributes approximately the same amount of CO2 as Germany in terms of global emissions. Yet, while Germany is targeting an 80% emissions reduction by 2050 outside of any commitments arising out of the recent Paris negotiations, the IMO GHG Study 2014 states that shipping is on course to increase emissions by 50-250% by the same year. The latest EU Parliament report predicts that by 2050, shipping will represent 17% of global GHG emissions.

“Despite the outcome at COP, it is vital that the shipping industry recognises the importance and urgency of addressing greenhouse gas emissions, to effectively contribute to the global benchmark of well below 2 degrees. The industry must also recognise that the eyes of the world are now watching what shipping will do next. At the next MEPC session, only a few months away, shipping is likely to come under scrutiny yet again.

“With so many profitable efficiency technologies available today, the private sector can capitalise on emission reduction schemes which can create new business opportunities across the industry. Reduction targets would send a clear market signal so that stakeholders can make informed investment  and R&D decisions. This becomes even more important when you take into account the long investment cycles of the shipping industry.  Clarity on future regulation can provide the shipping industry with the certainty it needs to take advantage of profitable solutions.

“Some in the industry are resisting regulatory action, preferring instead to see how existing fuel efficiency measures such as EEDI and SEEMP play out.   But we have yet to see these policies drive any meaningful investment in some of the promising new technologies that can unlock significant savings, such as air bubble systems and flettner rotors.  While these first steps are important, to stay within 2 degrees, we must make more progress in ship design, operation, types of fuels and the integration of smart and innovative clean technologies.

“Despite the lack of a clear target setting from Paris, we have seen that businesses and entrepreneurs have developed the solutions and are ready to scale their implementation.  We’ve already seen financing agreements between leading investors and shipowners, charterers making decisions based on efficiency, and vessels being retrofitted at drydock with efficiency technology solutions.  But the rest of the industry has been slow to follow – and regulation and standardisation can accelerate this process.

“The European Parliament, Denmark, Marshall Islands and Maersk, among others, have spoken: shipping needs to be regulated.  The industry is ready for regulation, and we are looking forward to seeing more countries and businesses come forward in support of explicit targets for shipping before MEPC 69 in April.”

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