Greece’s shipping minister, Ioannis Plakiotakis, sent a letter to the European Commission, urging for the charterers to pay for the upcoming European maritime carbon scheme (ETS).
More specifically, Greece officially declared that it wants the European Union to make charterers liable for carbon prices from 2022.
Mr. Plakiotakis noted that Greece is concered about the intentions of the European Commission regarding the EU ETS, and the inclusion of shipping, with the country supporting a special European Fund under the EU ETS.
What is more, Greece suggests to make ships’ commercial operators pay for carbon emission rights, according to the position of the Union of Greek Shipowners (UGS). The reason behind this decision is that the customers decide at what speeds vessel sail.
Furthermore, Mr. Plakiotakis believes that such a measure will stabilize the carbon price, reduce uncertainty and address the financial burdens.
The “polluter pays” principle makes the bodies that control the commercial operation of the ship pay the cost of GHG emissions. The proposed fund will also partly finance R&D for low-fuel and zero-emission fuels and technologies.
According to the Minister, this proposal will be able to ensure the achievement of EU’s environmental goals, while it will also help finance the necessary research for the reduction of fossil fuels, protecting, at the same time, small and medium-sized enterprises.
Nevertheless, the Greek proposal has many oppositions, such as liner operators, who believe that shipowners are the ones responsible for emissions, as otherwise there would be no incentive to improve their ships.