The clock is ticking towards the 0.5% sulphur cap and although this is about to become effective globally in less than 18 months from today, the route to compliance remains challenging.

Challenges Ahead

1 Fuel availability in 2020 (refining capacity)

2 Fuel safety onboard ships;

3  Fuel price (achieve cost-effective compliance);

4  Global enforcement outside ECAs ;

5  PSC and violation penalties / Global enforcement regime;

6 Fuel quality and compliance with ISO 8217 standard;

7 Uncertainty on the cost of existing fuels in 2020 and market impact towards the next 10      years;

8  Upfront investment vs long term savings for operators given the lack of certainty;

9  Operational complexity of the fuels and technologies to comply with requirements;

10 Possible changes in the regulatory landscape.

IMO’s Ship Plan for Global Sulphur Cap

An IMO working group meeting has developed a ship implementation plan (SIP) supported by information documents as part of the work to provide guidance on preparatory and transitional issues leading up the 0.50% sulphur limit for marine fuels from 1 January 2020.

It was agreed ahead of the intersessional working group (ISWG) meeting of the Sub-Committee on Pollution Prevention and Response (PPR) last week, tasked with developing guidelines to support the consistent implementation of the 2020 sulphur limit, that these aspects needed to fast-tracked so they can be approved by the IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) in October this year.

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