Current regulations allow ships to use fuels with up to 3.5% sulphur content within Icelandic territorial waters. The new amendments aim to reduce this percentage to 0.1%. This is even lower than the 0.5% that the IMO has established and which will apply from 1st January 2020.
If the Icelandic amendments do finally apply, a stricter limit on sulphur content will be in place, with vessels using a higher percentage needing to adopt other ways in order to reduce their SOx emissions while within Icelandic territorial waters.
The 0.1% sulphur limit would be in accordance with restrictions that are already in place in the ECA areas in the Baltic and North Seas, local media reported.
According to sources, around 22% of the marine fuel sold in Iceland in 2016 was HFO. In fact, Iceland has been discussing the negative effect of ships using HFO and for this reason it has banned the use of such fuel when a cruise ship docks at an Icelandic port.