Page 20 - European Energy Innovation - Autumn 2015 publication
P. 20
Autumn 2015 European Energy Innovation


The elephant in the get more international than a ship
calling at the port of Antwerp
climate-talks room with goods from China waving
a Panama flag and manned by
By Sotiris Raptis, clean shipping officer at Transport & Environment (pictured) Filipinos. That’s why, when the
Kyoto Protocol was adopted in
The final countdown to the know is that there will be two big 1997, the implementation of
global climate summit players missing at the Paris table. measures to reduce greenhouse
in Paris just began – less Technically speaking they are gas (GHG) emissions from
than 100 days until the not countries but, with as much international shipping was left to
moment when humanity finally emissions as Germany, they could industrialised countries working
decides to save itself (we hope). each easily be one. These two through the UN’s International
196 countries, all sovereign states, sectors are: international shipping Maritime Organisation (IMO).
will be seated around the big and aviation, the two elephants in
UN table trying hard to live up to the (Paris) room. The problem is that the IMO has
the expectations of the peoples not been very successful (to say
of the world. This is as far as the The international nature of the least) in agreeing measures
official story goes; what very few shipping is undisputed: you can’t to limit carbon emissions from
ships. As a matter of fact, shipping
emissions have increased by
approximately 70% since the
Kyoto baseline year, 1990, and
represented 2.7% of all emissions
in the world in 2012. What is
more worrying, scenarios of
future shipping GHG emissions
presented in the 2014 IMO study
show that under current policies
shipping emissions are expected
to rise by up to 250% by 2050.
The same IMO study finds that
any efficiency gains will be offset
by the growth in demand for

At Copenhagen in 2009 all the
UN countries, both developed
and developing, agreed to
keep the increase in global
temperature below 2°C, so as
to stand a chance of avoiding
catastrophic climate change.
This means that in 2050 GHG
emissions of all sectors of the
economy need to be 40 to 70%
below their 2010 levels in order to
be consistent with the 2°C target.
In this context, while the hope is
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