IMO fails to adopt more ambitious 2050 target

IMO Assembly approves May 18th as ‘International Day for Women in Maritime’

The International Maritime Organisation (IMO) failed to adopt a concrete shipping decarbonisation target following the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 79) meeting that ended last Friday.

The MEPC 79 met on 12-16 December, with negotiations set to continue in a technical working group in spring 2023 (ISWG-GHG-14) and to conclude at MEPC 80 in July 2023.

The support from the member countries for eliminating the industry’s emissions by 2050 and for setting interim targets to achieve this goal is increasing with 10 members still opposing the target against 24 in the June meeting.

Thirty-two IMO member states are in favour of setting a zero greenhouse gas emissions goal by 2050. Countries in favour of the 2050 goal were Nigeria, Marshall Islands, Sweden, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Malta, Canada, Spain, Vanuatu, Tonga, the United States, the United Kingdom, the Solomon Islands, Denmark, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Finland, Tuvalu, New Zealand, Fiji, Ireland, Japan, Kiribati, Jamaica, Cook Islands, Mexico, Palau, Maldives, France, and Republic of Korea.

However, 10 countries including South Africa, India, Brazil, Argentina, UAE, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, China, Russian Federation, and Turkey voted against increasing the level of ambition.

The IMO is currently in the process of revising its existing climate strategy, which aims to only halve emissions from ships by 2050.

The IMO is also negotiating on a ‘basket’ of different measures to reduce emissions from ships in the medium-term, including a carbon levy and a fuel standard.

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