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18.02.2010

New Global Vessel Efficiency System from World Shipping Council

Vessel Efficiency System Vessel Efficiency System.

The World Shipping Council (WSC) and its members have proposed to the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and its member governments a new global Vessel Efficiency System, which would improve the carbon and fuel efficiency of the world's fleet and therefore reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The proposal is for the IMO to apply vessel efficiency design standards for both new and existing vessels in the world's fleet. These standards would be similar in nature to the fuel efficiency standards required of cars and trucks in many countries around the world. The standards would also be tiered with higher standards required over time as technology developments allow further improvements.

Under the VES proposal, existing vessels that meet the established efficiency standards would operate free of any fees, whilst those that fail to meet the standards would be subject to a fee assessed for each ton of fuel consumed. Fees would be deposited into a fund managed by the IMO. The specific fee assessed would vary depending on how close the vessel was to meeting the standard, with the fees being higher for those vessels with the lowest efficiency. As such, the proposed system would reward improved efficiency across the fleet and discourage operation of the least efficient vessels.

The IMO achieved significant success recently in reaching a legally-binding global agreement that will dramatically reduce NOx, SOx, and particulate matter (PM) emissions from ships around the world. It is appropriate for the IMO to build on that success and establish an international regulatory system that can reduce carbon emissions as well.

The World Shipping Council and its members hope that the Vessel Efficiency System proposal will help the IMO develop a specific regulatory regime that would ensure improved efficiency across the world's maritime fleet and reduce CO2 emissions.

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