Classification society DNV GL has advised shipowners to start preparing for Europe’s own CO2 emissions measuring and cutting scheme, which comes into force on 1 January 2018.
The Monitoring, Reporting, and Verification (MRV) regulation will apply to all vessels equal to or larger than 5,000 gt calling at European ports and has one earlier deadline, 31 August 2017, by which shipowners must submit their ship-specific monitoring plans to an accredited verifier for approval.
However, several details are yet to be clarified, and the “practical impact” of the regulation on shipping companies is “not yet fully clear”, DNV GL said.
Under the requirement, shipping companies must monitor and report the amount of CO2 emitted by their ships on voyages to, from, and between European ports according to stated parameters. Data collection per voyage, which starts on 1 January 2018, must be verified by a third-party organisation, which will send it to a central database. Ship emission and efficiency data will be published by the European Commission (EC) by 30 June 2019 and each year thereafter.
CO2 emissions are based on fuel consumption, which is calculated by using one of four methods: bunker fuel delivery note and periodic stock takes of fuel tanks; bunker fuel tank monitoring on board; flow metres for applicable combustion processes; and direct CO2 emissions measurements.
DNV GL outlined where regulatory details are yet to be forthcoming. They include criteria under which a company or class society may become an accredited verifier; details about cargo monitoring and efficiency calculation; and the development of monitoring plans and reporting templates.
DNV GL said these issues will be addressed by the EC “towards the end of 2016”.
Despite these gaps, DNV GL advised shipowners and operators to start preparing for the MRV, both in terms of their ships and “for their shore systems and routines”.
Though the EC is yet to publish details on developing monitoring plans, the class society included this as an important step to take as early as possible, along with “examining how to best collect, aggregate, and report fuel consumption and transport work data”.
The shipping industry remains concerned about disparities that may enter between the European and an upcoming international regulation from the International Maritime Organization (IMO).
Commenting on the advice issued by DNV GL, a spokesman for the International Chamber of Shipping told IHS Maritime, “Notwithstanding this advice, it is difficult for ship operators to prepare for the EU regulation without knowing to what extent the EC may decide to realign the metrics with those agreed for global application by the IMO, as the EU regulation requires the commission to at least consider.
“ICS hopes that the IMO regulation will be adopted sometime next year well before the EU regulation’s implementation date.”