European shipowners welcome the outcome of the provisional agreement on the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS) maritime. The EU Parliament and Council have embraced the calls of industry stakeholders to earmark EU ETS revenues back to the maritime sector to support its energy transition.

At least twenty million ETS allowances, which correspond to EUR 1.5 billion under the current ETS carbon price, will be allocated to maritime projects under the Innovation Fund.

The provisional agreement on shipping is subject to an overall agreement on the ETS revision in late December.

Also read: Industry calls for earmarking of shipping ETS revenues

Bridging the price gap

‘European shipowners welcome the increased climate ambition of the “Fit for 55” package, recognising that the climate crisis is one of the greatest economic and environmental challenges faced by our society,’ says Sotiris Raptis, ECSA’s Secretary General. ‘Decarbonising shipping is not a question of “if”, but a question of “how”.’

He adds: ‘Setting aside part of the ETS revenues for maritime is a victory for the decarbonisation of the sector. Dedicated support through the Innovation Fund is key to bridging the price gap with clean fuels, improving the energy efficiency of ships, fostering innovation and building the infrastructure in ports. We look forward to working with the Commission and the stakeholders to develop effective tools for the industry’s transition.’

Also read: European shipowners support EU proposal to make operators pay for EU ETS

Polluter-pays principle

ECSA (the European Community Shipowners’ Associations) also welcomes the upholding of the “polluter-pays principle” through mandatory requirements for the pass-through of the EU ETS costs to the commercial operators of the vessels.

The phase-in period and the gradual inclusion of emissions from shipping over a three-year period is also crucial to ensure a smooth transition for the sector. The co-legislators also agreed on special provisions for ice-class vessels, small islands and outermost regions.

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