European Interest

Shipping sector fails to agree on ‘ambitious’ climate target

Flickr/PROAsian Development Bank/CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

The sustainable transport group Transport & Environment (T&E) has called for more progress to be made towards the forging of an interim greenhouse gas strategy for shipping at the International Maritime Orgranisation (IMO).

“Progress next week will require significant concessions from all sides and there is a danger that this could prevent agreement on a meaningful and ambitious outcome,” said Faig Abbasov, shipping policy officer at T&E. “The IMO faces one of its toughest tests to prove it’s relevant to the climate process and that it’s capable of delivering solutions to address shipping’s climate impact.”

Bill Hemmings, shipping director at T&E, said: “A determined minority are blocking ambition on capping emissions and defining a Paris-credible decarbonisation pathway. These moves are being portrayed as unachievable and a cap on world trade despite scientific evidence to the contrary being presented.”

According to a T&E press release, those opposing an ambitious climate target for the shipping sector are banking on the need for consensus to ensure that the outcome will kill all ambition.

“Clear warnings from delegates from climate-vulnerable South Pacific nations that effective IMO action is a prerequisite for their countries’ survival fell on deaf ears,” said Hemmings. “There is a danger that calls for differentiated action and to buy time will see off any likelihood of urgent action.”

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