NGO Opportunity Green supports a GHG levy with a starting price of $100/tonne of CO2 equivalent emissions to aid the International Maritime Organization’s emissions strategy.
n less than six months, the IMO will adopt a revised GHG (Greenhouse Gas) Strategy. According to Green Group, the upcoming 14th intersessional working group on greenhouse gas emissions (ISWG-GHG 14), is a pivotal moment to not only ensure the shipping industry takes meaningful action on climate change, but to set out plans for a transition that is fair and equitable for all nations.
At COP26, the Climate Vulnerable Forum, which represents 55 nations, called for a global levy for shipping, with the “majority of its revenues being employed as additional financial support for urgent climate actions, particularly by the vulnerable developing countries”.
From all the proposals on the table, the GHG levy put forward by the Marshal Islands and Solomon Islands is the strongest, both in terms of its ambition, and support for the most impacted developing nations. It proposes a starting price of $100/tonne of CO2 equivalent emissions, with this price increasing every five years, with the majority of revenues generated going towards climate action in the most vulnerable nations.
Ana Laranjeira, Shipping Manager at Opportunity Green said:
According to the World Bank, putting a price on shipping emissions by 2050 could raise between $1 trillion and $3.7 trillion.
While there is no panacea to solve global climate inequity, a measure of this magnitude would not only generate revenue to accelerate global shipping decarbonisation, but would also support the sustainable development of the most climate vulnerable nations, advancing a fair and equitable transition for all. She then went on to purpose the timely adoption of a market-based measure that:
- Efficiently addresses the price differential between conventional fuels and sustainable alternative fuels, by adequately pricing lifecycle GHG emissions.
- Has the potential to generate revenues that can spearhead an equitable transition for all.
- Will provide predictability to industry, decision-makers, and incentivize early movers.
Pressure is mounting ahead of these IMO meetings, taking place from 20-24 March 2023. The UN Secretary-General, António Guterres, has urged the IMO to revise its emissions target in line with the Paris Agreement goal of 1.5°C. The IMO’s current emissions Strategy is to reduce GHG emissions by at least 50% by 2050, but Guterres has stated that this target is not enough, and puts the shipping sector on a pathway of above 3°C of global warming – far from the 1.5°C pathway it needs to achieve.
International shipping currently produces approximately 3% of all global greenhouse gases. Increasing demand for shipping services means that maritime emissions are accelerating faster than many other sectors and if no meaningful action is taken, shipping could account for 10-13% of global emissions by 2050.