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NGOs urge IMO to publish ship efficiency data

A group of NGOs has called on the IMO to make data on ship efficiency freely available in an effort to reduce emissions and push down costs.

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Transport & Environment, Seas at Risk and Carbon War Room all claim that transparency is essential if the industry is to successfully move towards a low-carbon future.

But according to the group, the IMO’s environment committee (MEPC) plans to restrict access to the energy efficiency design index (EEDI) data on newly built ships, which may negatively impact efforts to reduce emissions.

When making submissions to the MEPC, Transport & Environment and Seas at Risk, who are both part of the Clean Shipping Coalition, cited a study from the University of Gothenburg.

The study, prepared by Jessica Coria, associate professor at the Department of Economics, University of Gothenburg, states that: “Social and market pressure resulting from information disclosure can generate strong incentives for pollution control in a way that traditional enforcement tools may not be able to achieve.”

The NGOs believe that some ship owners and operators are fighting against transparency as the data in question is commercially sensitive, something the NGOs dispute.

The group claims that the publication of efficiency data in the European car industry has led to average annual improvements in vehicle fuel efficiency of 4%, and also cite the US aviation industry, where quarterly data on fuel consumption has had to be published since 1958.

“Transparency of efficiency data is needed to inform good policy making and is a win-win for the shipping industry and the environment,” said John Maggs, president of the Clean Shipping Coalition.

“Transparency of data will help drive down industry costs, improve the functioning of the shipping market and lead to desperately needed reductions in ship GHG emissions.”

Several independent efficiency indices are currently in use, such as the Clean Cargo Working Group, the Clean Shipping Index and the A-G efficiency rating.

However, the NGOs say the industry would be better served by a single source of certified and official data, backed by the IMO


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