The amendments to MARPOL Annex VI approved at MEPC 75 to mandate technical and operational measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from shipping were formally adopted at MEPC 76 in June 2021 and will enter into force on 01 November 2022. Under these new regulations ships will be required to amend their SEEMP to set out how they will achieve the required reductions in carbon intensity by 01 January 2023 and verify that their ships meet EEXI requirements by the first survey after 01 January 2023.
Details of the measures, including baselines and reduction factors, have been included in guidelines but but the intention is eventually to develop a Code that will make them mandatory and legally enforceable.
Dependent on how successful they have been in reaching the required annual reduction target, ships will be rated as A, B, C, D or E, with C being the required level, classed as Moderate; A and B classed as Major superior and Minor superior; and D and E as Minor inferior and Inferior. A ship rated as D for 3 consecutive years or as E will be required to develop a plan of corrective actions to bring it in line with the required level of carbon intensity.
The proposal in respect of an International Maritime research Board to fund research and development into low and zero carbon technologies will be discussed further at MEPC 77 in November 2021, while mid and long term measures, including the bunker levy proposed by the Marshall Islands, will be discussed at an intersessional working group in October.