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What next for the IMO’s decarbonisation efforts?

Lloyd's Shipping & Trade Law

What next for the IMO’s decarbonisation efforts?

The shipping industry is facing a challenge to play its part in achieving the Paris Agreement target of limiting global warming to 1.5°C compared to pre-industrial levels.1 As vital as the industry is for global trade and the global economy,2 it can no longer benefit from exceptional treatment compared to other crucial sectors (eg road transport, aviation, housing, etc).

The political deadlock during the recent 76th session of the IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) highlighted serious concerns hampering negotiations between various groups of stakeholders around proposed decarbonisation measures. If real progress is to be made during the Committee’s next session in November, future diplomatic efforts must aim to ease those concerns by focusing on designing a mechanism to offset the potential unequal negative impacts which the introduction of measures could have on different groups of states, their economies and populations.

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