IMO 2020: Stand Firm on Fuel Oil Carriage Ban, Trident Alliance Urges

Tuesday October 23, 2018

The Trident Alliance has urged IMO member states to stand firm on a proposed fuel oil carriage ban.

Having been backed by IMO in February, the ban is expected to be formally adopted following a vote this week at the 73rd Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 73).

A ban would effectively make it an offence for any vessel to have noncompliant bunkers onboard unless it had a legitimate reason to do so - such as cases where vessels are fitted with a scrubber, or it was a bunkering vessel delivering fuel to a scrubber equipped vessel.

Trident Alliance says the ban is a fundamental tool for securing strong global enforcement of the new IMO 2020 global sulfur cap, that also makes enforcement considerably easier by removing the requirement to prove that a vessel has been burning non-compliant fuel - simply having it onboard would be an offence.

But there are now attempts to defer implementation due to uncertainty over fuel attributes, “matters that are already being addressed by the relevant IMO bodies, and which well-prepared shipowners have already taken into consideration,” says the Alliance.

“The Trident Alliance stands firm on the need for robust and effective enforcement and views the carriage ban on non-compliant fuel as a very strong tool to secure that outcome,” says Trident Alliance Chair, Roger Strevens.

“After 1st January 2020 it is not necessary to have high sulphur fuel in the fuel tanks of vessels without scrubbers installed. Therefore, the Trident Alliance cannot accept any postponement of the carriage ban. We strongly urge all Member States to stand firm on this.”