virtual ® 04-Aug-2019 15:29

Guidance to Shipping Companies and Crews on Preparing for Compliance with the 2020 ‘Global Sulphur Cap’ for Ships’ Fuel Oil in Accordance with MARPOL Annex VI

Year: 2019
Language: english
Author: ICS
Genre: Guide
Format: PDF
Quality: eBook
Pages count: 40
Description: This ICS Guidance was first issued in September 2018 and was updated in January 2019 to take account of
decisions at International Maritime Organization (IMO) committee meetings.
This current version has been updated after the IMO Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) in
May 2019 and the IMO Marine Safety Committee (MSC) in June 2019.
From 1 January 2020, in accordance with MARPOL Annex VI1, the sulphur content of fuel oil used on board
commercial ships trading outside sulphur Emission Control Areas (ECAs)2 must not exceed 0.50% m/m.
The 0.50% sulphur limit is a significant reduction from the current global limit of 3.50% m/m which has been
in place since 2012. The worldwide implementation of this important new IMO requirement – referred to in
this Guidance as the ‘Global Sulphur Cap’ – therefore represents a regulatory game changer.
Apart from the significant additional cost of compliant fuel, implementation will be far more complex than
for the previous introduction of ECAs. This is because of the sheer magnitude of the switchover and the
much larger quantities and different types of fuel involved, as well as continuing uncertainties about the
availability of compliant fuels in every port worldwide immediately after 1 January 2020.
The only regular exception to the use of 0.50% sulphur fuel will be for the relatively small number of ships
which elect to use the ‘equivalent’ compliance mechanisms in accordance with Regulation 4 of MARPOL
Annex VI such as LNG fuel or the fitting of an exhaust gas cleaning system (EGCS).
This ICS Guidance has been prepared for the vast majority of ships that will comply with the
Global Sulphur Cap immediately after 1 January 2020 using fuel oils with a sulphur content of
0.50% m/m or less.
The 0.50% requirement will be strictly enforced globally by Port State Control (PSC) authorities, whose
task will be assisted by the prohibition on the carriage of non-compliant fuels, which will enter into force on 1
March 2020. It is emphasised that IMO Member States have agreed there will be no ‘transition’ period after 1
January 2020 to allow for the burning of any non-compliant fuel remaining on board ships.
The ‘transition’ period is in reality the period up until midnight on 31 December 2019. Shipping
companies and charterers, as well as ships’ crews, need to fully prepare now.





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