The EU Council and the EU Parliament reached a provisional agreement on the FuelEU Maritime decarbonisation initiative on 23 March 2023.
The main objective of the FuelEU Maritime initiative, as a key part of the EU’s Fit for 55 package, is to increase the demand for and consistent use of renewable and low-carbon fuels and reduce the greenhouse gas emissions from the maritime sector, while ensuring the smooth operation of maritime traffic and avoiding distortions in the internal market.
The agreement is expected to ensuring that the greenhouse gas intensity of fuels used by the shipping sector will gradually decrease over time, by 2% in 2025 to as much as 80% by 2050.
The new rules also introduce an additional zero-emission requirement at berth, mandating the use of on-shore power supply (OPS) or alternative zero-emission technologies in ports by passenger ships and containerships, with a view to mitigating air pollution emissions in ports, which are often close to densely populated areas.
FuelEU Maritime takes a goal-based and technology-neutral approach, allowing for innovation and the development of new fuel technologies to meet future needs, and offering operators the freedom to decide which to use based on ship-specific or operation-specific profiles. The Regulation also provides for a voluntary pooling mechanism. Under this scheme, ships will be allowed to pool their compliance balance with one or more other ships. Thus, it will be the pool as a whole that has to meet the greenhouse gas intensity limits on average.
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