European parliament calls for shipping to be included in COP21 climate deal

European parliament environment groups are urging EU governments to include the shipping and aviation industries in the Paris climate deal (COP21).

The 28 EU member states meet on 18 September to finalise their position for The UN Framework Convention on Climate Change conference (COP 21) to be held in Paris in December.

In the letter to the Luxembourg Presidency of the EU seven European parliament environmental groups noted that international shipping and aviation already accounted for 8% of global greenhouse gas and emissions from shipping were expected to grow by 50 – 250% by 2050.

“It is therefore of paramount importance that the text to be finalised in Paris includes a requirement for the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to increase their climate ambition and adopt measures to limit and reduce their sectors emissions in line with the overall objective of limiting the temperature increase to under two degrees Celsius,” the stated.

The letter took aim at the IMO’s failure to set up a process to set an emissions target. “The IMO, as recently as last May, stepped back from even launching a process to set up an overall emissions target for international shipping. This is despite the fact that there is an abundance of low-cost mitigation options that would permit global shipping to grow while arresting the growth of its emissions.”

It said there was no reasonable excuse for the two sectors to continue being exempt from the global framework. “In this context, it is essential that the need for ambitious targets for aviation and shipping is reflected in the Council conclusions on COP 21,” the letter concluded. 

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