IMO, the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) have signed an agreement to allocate US$2.0 million to a two-year global maritime energy efficiency partnership project, which aims to support increased uptake and implementation of energy-efficiency measures for shipping.
The so-called GloMEEP project, formally designated “Transforming the Global Maritime Transport Industry towards a Low Carbon Future through Improved Energy Efficiency”, will focus in particular on building capacity to implement technical and operational measures in developing countries, where shipping is increasingly concentrated. The aim is to promote a low-carbon maritime sector, in order to minimize the adverse impacts of shipping emissions on climate change, ocean acidification and local air quality.
A particularly interesting aspect of the project is its expected role in catalysing an innovative public-private sector partnership within the project framework, through a new Global Industry Alliance (GIA) for maritime energy efficiency. Participation is anticipated from leading private sector companies, including classification societies, ship builders, ship owners, ship operators, marine equipment suppliers, port operators, and marine consultancy and management system providers.
IMO will execute this GEF-funded GloMEEP project in partnership with UNDP. Ten IMO Member States have signed up to the GloMEEP project as lead pilot countries: Argentina, China, Georgia, India, Jamaica, Malaysia, Morocco, Panama, Philippines and South Africa. The lead pilot countries will be supported in taking a fast-track approach to pursuing relevant legal, policy and institutional reforms, driving national and regional government action and industry innovation to support the effective implementation of IMO’s energy efficiency requirements.
Besides the GEF financing for GloMEEP, other funds will be mobilized in the form of in-kind and financial donations, to a projected total of some US$13.8 million.
A number of events related to the implementation of the GloMEEP project are expected to be held alongside the two-day inaugural Future-Ready Shipping 2015 Conference, the joint IMO-Singapore International Conference on Maritime Technology Transfer and Capacity Building, to be held in Singapore on 28-29 September 2015. The conference will gather maritime leaders to discuss ways forward in encouraging the uptake of energy-efficient ship technologies. It is envisaged that the official launch and commissioning of the GloMEEP project and associated global project task force and inception meetings will be held during and after the conference.
Mandatory technical and operational energy-efficiency measures were adopted by Parties to Annex VI of the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL) in July 2011 and they entered into force on 1 January 2013. These regulations make mandatory the Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) for certain types of new ships, and the Ship Energy Efficiency Management Plan (SEEMP) for all ships. Since the entry into force of the regulations on energy efficiency for ships in 2013, further work has been undertaken to extend the scope of application of the EEDI to include several additional ship types, to further develop guidelines to support uniform implementation, and to promote technology transfer.
IMO’s third study on greenhouse gas emissions from ships (2014) estimates that international shipping emitted 796 million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) in 2012, down from 885 million tonnes in 2007. This represented 2.2% of the global emissions of CO2 in 2012, down from 2.8% in 2007. However, the study’s “business as usual” scenarios forecast a growth in CO2 emissions for international maritime transport of between 50% to 250% in the period to 2050, depending on future economic and energy developments.