The EU says the first step toward reduced emissions is a monitoring system
The European Union says it will pursue a monitoring, reporting, and verification system for greenhouse gas emissions from ships beginning next year.
In a joint statement, European Commission Vice President Siim Kallas and Connie Hedegaard, the EU commissioner for climate action, wrote that the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) made a significant step toward emission reductions with the Energy Efficiency Design Index released last year, but the measure will not be enough to ensure sufficiently quick reductions.
The IMO measure only applies to new ships starting in 2015, and the EU argues that "intermediary steps" are needed.
Siim Kallas, Vice President, EC and Connie Hedegaard, Commissioner for Climate Action, EU
A simple, robust approach is the necessary starting point
The EU said it will consider several options, including market-based mechanisms, while also working with the IMO on its process and debating various approaches with stakeholders.
"A simple, robust and globally-feasible approach towards setting a system for monitoring, reporting and verification of emissions based on fuel consumption is the necessary starting point," Kallas and Hedegaard wrote.
International shipping accounts for about 3 percent of global carbon dioxide emissions and the IMO has said that could rise to 18 percent by 2050 without regulation, yet there is no international regulation of greenhouse gas emissions from ships, Reuters reports.
Some environmental groups said the EU plan doesn't go far enough and called for quick implementation of a market-based measure.