EGCSA calls for 2020 sulphur cap

Oct 07 2016

The Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems Association (EGCSA) has presented its case in support of the implementation of the 2020 global sulphur emissions limit.

The EGCSA said that any delay to the global limit of 0.5% m/m SOx emissions will not only prolong air quality issues that harm human and environmental health, but also create further uncertainty in an industry already beset by difficulties.

Don Gregory, director of EGCSA, highlighted the association’s intimate involvement in regulatory and compliance development work regarding the SOx issue, including participation in EU sub-groups such as Port Reception Facilities, Measuring, Reporting & Verification and Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems (EGCS), work on IMO EGCS guidelines and collaboration on both ISO and CIMAC fuel working groups, as well as work with relevant NGOs.

Gregory pointed out that, by co-ordinating and collaborating with varied stakeholders and through the work of its members, EGCSA has taken concrete steps to enable the industry to install and operate sulphur abatement technologies more easily.

The association has, for example, driven the adoption of a simple, realistic solution on how to measure and monitor scrubber washwater to meet the IMO criteria. It is now easier than ever for shipowners to be in compliance with an exhaust gas cleaning system because of this work, he claimed.

Nils Hoy Petersen, managing director of Clean Marine and founding member of EGCSA, said, “An early decision is essential to enable an ordered, safe and economic installation window prior to 2020.” He went on to explain that, “the EGCS industry is prepared for the challenge. However, this resource and capacity may become eroded if the decision is delayed.”

He suggested that by mobilising the newbuilding sector presently facing a down-turn to assist in design and installation, the capacity to provide EGCS will be even higher now than after 2020. “EGCS are essentially portable and can be fabricated pretty much anywhere in the world and transported to the installation point. The EGCSA is of the opinion that the shipping industry could carry out installation of ballast water treatment and scrubber technology simultaneously to save on off-hire and create synergies,” he said.

Jan Kjetil Paulsen, senior adviser shipping of the Bellona foundation, said. “Before ECAs were implemented, it was estimated that shipping caused 50,000 premature deaths in Europe every year. The purpose of the proposed 0.5% sulphur cap is to improve human health and further reduce the risk of thousands of premature deaths due to air pollution,” he said.

“A dramatic reduction of SO2 in the coastal waters of Denmark due to the introduction of ECAs, has been proven to lead to significant health improvements. If the 0.5% global sulphur cap is delayed that will, first of all, have a negative impact on the coastal waters that have no ECAs. These waters also happen to be in the proximity of some of the most densely populated regions in the world. Delaying the sulphur cap will therefore hit where it hurts the most,” he warned.

The international association represents more than 25 member companies dedicated to reducing sulphur oxides (SOx) and particulate emissions from marine exhaust gas.

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