Important EU-decision postponed

Important EU-decision postponed

08-07-2020 12:00:00

The European Parliament has decided that they will not use 2018 as baseline to calculate the shipping companies’ CO2 reductions. Instead the final decision shall be made by the European Commission.

”It is a good solution that ENVI now puts the ball in the Commission’s court. If 2018 had been chosen as baseline, we would have to make the regulation based on data from one year only, which is a much too fragile foundation. Some ships only call at port very few times in the EU and if these trips have been ineffective it would misrepresent the ship’s energy efficiency. We have examples of this among our members”, says Maria Skipper Schwenn, Executive Director at Danish Shipping.

ENVI delegates the decision to the Commission, which will hereafter determine the baseline based on solid data and considering that first movers should not be in a worse position.

”Danish shipping companies are conscious of their CO2 emissions, and with ambitions of CO2 neutrality in 2050, they are working determinedly. We must, however, use the correct baseline so we do not end up with an unintended consequence: which it would be, if it punishes the shipping companies which have taken many initiatives, and at the same time rewards those that have not made these investments”, says Maria Skipper Schwenn.

Another part of the legislative proposal involves whether the cargo carried – the real transport work – onboard ships shall be counted in when the energy efficiency of a voyage is calculated.

On this, ENVI decided that all ships sailing to, from and within the EU shall continue to report the amount of cargo carried on board. The Commission had otherwise proposed to weaken this requirement and make it voluntary.

“It is of vital importance that it remains mandatory for ships to report the amount of cargo carried they have onboard. Otherwise, it will not be possible to calculate the actual efficiency of a ship. We support looking at the ship and the operation as a whole”, says Maria Skipper Schwenn.

Lastly, ENVI has decided to propose an inclusion of shipping in the EU’s emission trading system, ETS.

”It is not surprising that ENVI proposes to include shipping in the emission trading system. It is a clear indicator of the parliament’s green ambitions. However, we believe that a proposal being so far-reaching possibly should be adopted via the ordinary legislative procedure, which also includes an impact assessment. The work on this has already begun and we expect a proposal from the Commission next summer. Therefore, it does not make sense to try to get a far-reaching initiative as the ETS in through the backdoor”, says Maria Skipper Schwenn.

ENVI’s legislative proposal now must be adopted by the entire European Parliament in September, after which it shall be negotiated with the Council.

Source: Danish Shipping

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