IMO puts sulfur ban on the agenda
A proposal from Maersk Line to prohibit ships without scrubbers to have bunker oil with a sulfur content of more than 0,5% on board, will now be discussed in IMO until February. A ban will make it easier to check whether the new global sulfur requirement, which goes into force from 2020, is being respected by all.
The issue will be discussed when the IMO's pollution prevention and control committee will hold its 5th session in February. Exactly the possibility of checking if everyone complies with the forthcoming ban will be easier if it is completely forbidden to have fuel with a higher sulfur content than 0,5% aboard ships that do not have scrubbers on board.
The International Bunkers Association (IBIA) already mentioned the possibility at the committee meeting this year, where Norway suggested that such a proposal should be adopted immediately. It did not happen and Norway will probably propose a more detailed plan at the forthcoming meeting.
And it is backed by A.P. Møller - Maersk:
"Maersk supports a global ban on having a bunker on board that does not respect the 0,5% sulfur content. We see it as a simple and robust part of the 2020 enforcement toolbox," said Simon Bergulf, director of Regulatory Affairs in A.P. Møller - Maersk to Maritime Denmark earlier this month.
Danske Rederier also support a ban.
If an agreement can be reached on the ban in February next year, it will be effective from March 1, 2020, two months after the use of highly sulfuric oil has been banned. This is due to the fact that an underlying legislation must be adapted, says IBIA.
Source: World Maritime News / Maritime Denmark