Symposium on IMO 2020 and Alternative Fuels 17-18 October 2019


IMO hosted a Symposium on IMO 2020 and Alternative Fuels (17-18 October 2019).

Aims of the symposium

This one and half day symposium aimed to raise awareness and to take stock of the preparations for the IMO 2020 rule, and to discuss the role of alternative fuels in the decarbonization of international shipping.

Download the full programme and list of speakers here.

Download the audio files:

IMO 2020

The 1 January 2020 entry into force of the new global sulphur limit of 0.5 per cent for ships’ fuel oil is fast approaching. (It was first adopted in 2008 and confirmed again in 2016). Sulphur 2020 brings in significant health benefits for people and for the oceans. The IMO 2020 rule will support the UN SDGS, in particular SDG 3 (good health and wellbeing); 14 (oceans). As an agency of the United Nations, IMO is firmly committed to helping its Member States achieve the SDGs, which set clear targets to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all.

Preparation is essential. IMO has been working hard, with Member States and the shipping and bunker supply industries, to support the implementation of this important, global, rule. Read more on sulphur 2020.

Decarbonization of international shipping

IMO continues to contribute to the global fight against climate change, in support of the UN Sustainable Development Goal 13, to take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts. IMO has adopted mandatory measures to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases from international shipping, under IMO’s pollution prevention treaty (MARPOL) - the Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) mandatory for new ships, and the Ship Energy Efficiency Management Plan (SEEMP).

In 2018, IMO adopted an initial IMO strategy on reduction of GHG emissions from ships, setting out a vision which confirms IMO’s commitment to reducing GHG emissions from international shipping and to phasing them out as soon as possible.

The targets set out in the strategy will not be met using fossil fuels only. A zero-carbon future requires a great deal of research and development. So, as well as the regulatory imperative, there is a need to make zero-carbon ships more attractive and to direct investments towards innovative sustainable technologies and alternative low-carbon and zero-carbon fuels. Battery powered and hybrid ferries, ships trialling biofuels or hydrogen fuel cells, wind-assisted propulsion and several other ideas are now being actively explored. The IMO GHG strategy has sent a clear signal to innovators that this is the way forward. Read more about the initial IMO GHG Strategy.

Symposium programme

Agenda ( download full programme )

Day 1 IMO 2020 (Thursday, 17 October 2019, one day session)

9:30 Introduction and opening remarks by IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim

9:45 Member State perspective of IMO 2020 implementation and enforcement

10:30 The view of wider society followed by Q & A

11:00 Break

11:30 Availability and quality of compliant fuel oil

Introductory remarks from panellists followed by a panel discussion

13:00 Lunch

14:30 Industry preparation and guidance

Introductory remarks from panellists followed by a panel discussion

16:00 Break

16:30 Use of scrubbers and LNG to comply with the 0.50% requirement followed by Q & A

17:15 Summary

17:30 Close

Day 2 Role of alternative fuels in decarbonization of the shipping industry (Friday, 18 October 2019, half day session)

9:30 Introduction  - Initial IMO GHG Strategy – role of alternative fuels in meeting the ambition

10:00 Options and drivers for alternative fuels to decarbonize the shipping industry

Introductory remarks from panellists followed by a panel discussion

11:00 Break

11:30 Stakeholder perspectives on alternative fuels and decarbonization of the shipping industry

Introductory remarks from panellists followed by a panel discussion

12:45 Summary

13:00 Close

Click to download full programme