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American Shipper

Report: EC plans carbon dioxide trading for ships

Report: EC plans carbon dioxide trading for ships

A European environmental group is applauding reports that the European Commission will add ships to the European Union emissions trading scheme.

   Jo'o Vieira of the European Federation for Transport and Environment, a Brussels-based sustainable transport campaign group, was reacting to a Reuters report Monday that said the European Commission will propose adding shipping companies to the EU emissions trading scheme in the wake of a proposal in December that aviation be added.

   The EU sets limits on the amount of carbon dioxide that big factories may emit and allows them to trade emissions permits if they overshoot or come in below their caps.

   Reuters said the EU executive would take action on its own rather than waiting for action at the international level to tackle ship emissions.

   “The EU is finally waking up to the environmental impact of shipping, the second-fastest growing source of climate-changing CO2 emissions. So far, the international community has manifestly failed in its responsibility to clean up shipping in the decade since Kyoto was signed,” Vieira said.

   But he said, “emissions trading alone will not be enough to seriously reduce the environmental impact of the sector. The EU’s estimates for aviation, also set to be included in the system, suggest that emissions reductions through trading will be offset by less than one year’s growth of the industry. With shipping the situation will be similar. We urge the EU to consider other, more effective measures such as differentiated port charges, en route charges and fuel taxes.”

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