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Call for shipping to 'act now' to cut emissions

Consultancy calls for the maritime industry to develop voluntary market-based measures to reduce GHG emissions.



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Updated on 05 Nov 2010 07:11 GMT

Maritime greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions consultancy Carbon Positive says the 'slow pace' of GHG regulation in shipping opens up a great opportunity for forward-thinking, innovative members of the shipping community to develop pioneering market-based initiatives; programs that will help the sector prepare for any future compliance obligations, reward early actors for their contribution, and demonstrate decisive action to those outside the sector.

A white paper issued today Carbon Positive outlines how voluntary, market-based action can help prepare industries for compliance-based schemes, stimulate technological advance, and inform the development of good regulation along the way. Continuing this theme, Carbon Positive will be initiating a consultation process to develop an action programme for trading experiments in 2011.

Carbon Positive CEO Helena Athoussaki said: "Given the understandable difficulties IMO has in developing GHG regulation, we propose an experimental emissions-trading programme in shipping, based on voluntary participation, to complement the IMO's work on market-based measures."

"We ask the IMO and governments to embrace such early action and recognise credible reductions under any future regulatory regime," Ms Athoussaki said.

"The recent MEPC 61 meeting at IMO underscored the ongoing difficulties of securing consensus on GHG reduction measures in the face of the divergent principles of the IMO's equal treatment of all parties and the UNFCCC's common but differentiated responsibilities. It is also clear the work of MEPC's expert group on market-based measures will yet take some time to ensure that any programme adopted is both balanced and workable. The Secretary-General's opening speech at MEPC acknowledged the need for a considered approach that can't be rushed," Carbon Positive said in a statement.

"Based on its 30 years experience in emissions markets and regulation, Carbon Positive supports the IMO's position as a responsible one. Yet Secretary-General Mitropoulos also identified the need to move forward on GHG control 'in good time so that entities outside this forum will be given no reason to doubt the seriousness with which we approach our task'," Carbon Positive added.

John Palmisano, Commercial Director at Carbon Positive, said: "There is a way to reconcile these conflicting imperatives. An opportunity exists for those in the maritime sector of a mind to act now to show the sector is taking real and measurable action to reduce GHG emissions. "

"The direct regulation of maritime GHGs is inevitable, and whether these take the form of a market-based measure or not, credible voluntary market-based action can and should be rewarded," Mr Palmisano added.

A copy of the white paper can be viewed by visiting the address below:

http://www.carbonpositive.net/fetchfile.aspx?fileID=192






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