Marine Link
Monday, January 16, 2017

EU Ship Levy Proposal Could Undermine IMO Emissions Work

A European Union proposal to impose a levy on ships over their greenhouse gas emissions risks undermining the sector's global efforts to tackle the issue, the UN shipping agency's chief said on Monday. EU lawmakers voted in December in favour of including shipping in draft reforms of the bloc's carbon emissions trading system (ETS), which could see the establishment of a fund to compensate for the industry's carbon footprint. The shipping industry, which accounts for around 90 percent of goods transported globally, has rejected unilateral moves by the EU, arguing it would distort world trade and instead wants the issue handled via UN agency, the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

IMO Secretary-General Speaks Out Against Regional Emission Trading System

Photo: International Maritime Organization (IMO)

International Maritime Organization (IMO)  Secretary-General Kitack Lim has written to senior European officials expressing his concern that including shipping in the European Union’s Emission Trading System (EU-ETS) could undermine efforts to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from shipping on a global basis. In a letter to Martin Schulz (President of the European Parliament), Jean-Claude Juncker (President of the European Commission) and Donald Tusk (President of the European Council)…

News: EU Single-Hull Phase-Out Elicits IMO Scorn

Taking a page from OPA 90, the European Union has officially adopted its unilateral plan for accelerated phase-out of single-hull tankers. The regulation was published in the October 1 edition of the Official Journal of the European Union and came into effect on October 21, 2003. It provides for, among other things, the immediate ban on transport of heavy grades of oil in single-hull oil tankers of 5,000 dwt or above to or from EU ports and the accelerated phase-out of single-hull oil tankers on a schedule tied to the ship's MARPOL category. The move drew immediate negative reaction from the International Maritime Organization (IMO), an organization which generally frowns upon such national or regional action. In a statement released October 23, Secretary-General of IMO, William A.

EU Regulation on Single-Hull Oil Tankers Sparks Concern

The Secretary-General of IMO, William A. O'Neil, expressed serious concern about the European Union Regulation on single-hull oil tankers, which reportedly entered into force on 21 October 2003. While being aware of the considerations which led to the regional measures being adopted by the European Union, Mr. O'Neil was particularly disturbed at their unilateral character and the negative repercussions the measures would have on the shipping industry, which, due to its international nature…

Intertanko Co-Sponsors Maritime Transport Symposium

Intertanko will co-sponsor a symposium in the European Union capital Brussels on January 24, 2002 on the subject of: The First European Parliament Symposium on Maritime Safety in Europe Maritime safety: Over the horizon? The symposium will draw up an inventory of European policies on maritime safety, and aims to heighten the awareness of the players involved and give an opportunity to compare ideas. The speakers will include Loyola de Palacio, vice-president of the European Commission and commissioner in charge of Transport and Energy, Göke Daniel Frerichs, president of the European Union's Economic and Social Committee, Isabelle Durant and F. Alvarez-Cascos of the European Union Transport Council. Source: Intertanko

1,200+ Migrants Rescued off Libya

Italy's coast guard said on Tuesday it had coordinated the rescue of 1,271 migrants from rubber and wooden boats in several operations off the coast of Libya. Italy was long at the frontier of seaborne migration from North Africa, but most of the hundreds of thousands of people arriving in Europe on rickety boats last year took a less risky route to Greece. Vessels from the Italian navy and coast guard and a Slovenian military ship working as part of the European Union naval operation Eunavfor Med conducted the rescues. Italy used to run its own search and rescue mission for the boat migrants, but the Mare Nostrum or "Our Sea" project was stopped and replaced with the European Union's Frontex scheme, which had to be expanded as Europe faced its worst migration crisis since World War Two.

EU Council Release Provisional Version

The Council of the European Union released the Provisional Version

Stolt-Nielsen Granted Conditional Amnesty for Investigations

industry. industry. for violation of U.S. U.S. respect to parcel tanker operations. inland barge operations. the appropriate authorities. amnesty programs, including continued cooperation.

LNG for the Maritime Sector Closer to Reality

The European Union will support with over €1.2 million from the TEN-T Program a study aimed at identifying and addressing the potential barriers to the construction and operation of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) fueled vessels. The project, which was selected for funding under the 2011 TEN-T Annual Call, will examine the technical requirements, regulations and environmental operation permits that need to be met in order to shift from traditionally fuelled engines to LNG. LNG is rapidly emerging as a cheaper and more environmentally friendly fuel for the maritime sector and its uptake is encouraged by the European Union. Specific aspects related to the manufacturing, conversion, certification and operation phases of a LNG fuelled vessel will be analysed.

EU Double Hull Legislation Signed

The President of the European Parliament, Hans-Gert Pöttering, officially signed a European Parliament and Council Regulation that represents an important response to offshore tanker accidents and will lead to better protection of the seas and the environment. Under the new regulation, oil tankers transporting heavy oils will only be allowed to fly the flag of a European Union member state if they are double hulled. In addition, regardless of what flag they are flying, only double hulled tankers will be able to enter member states’ harbors or anchor in their territorial waters. The regulation is directly applicable in all the Member States and, now that it has been signed, will enter into force on the twentieth day after its publication in the Official Journal of the European Union.

EU Adopts New Arctic Policy

The High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and the European Commission have adopted a policy proposal that will guide the actions of the European Union in the Arctic region. The European Union will step up its existing action and engagement in the region with 39 actions focusing on climate change, environmental protection, sustainable development and international cooperation. The particular importance of research, science and innovation is reflected across these priority areas. The Joint Communication takes into account existing EU legislation, including the commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, as well as ongoing and forthcoming EU activities and projects. It also builds on and complements the Arctic policies of the EU Member States.

New Fuels for the Maritime Sector in Spain?

The European Union will support with over €1 million from the TEN-T Program a series of studies to assess the use of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) as a shipping fuel in the Port of Gijón in Spain. The project, which was selected for funding under the 2011 TEN-T Annual Call, involves conducting studies to evaluate the feasibility and plan the necessary infrastructure adaptations for the use of LNG as a shipping fuel in the Port of Gijón. LNG is rapidly emerging as a more environmentally friendly fuel for the maritime sector and its uptake is encouraged by the European Union.

Gdansk Faces Closure

Gdansk shipyard will have to be scaled back or face possible closure as Brussels turns the screw on illegal state aid to the Polish shipbuilding sector. Neelie Kroes, the European Union competition commissioner, has given the Polish authorities one month to reduce capacity at the yard or face having to repay the state aid. Ms Kroes on Friday accepted capacity cuts at Poland's Gdynia and Szczecin yards in return for past state aid but said no satisfactory solution had been proposed for Gdansk. The three shipyards have together received 1.8bn in subsidies since Poland joined the European Union in 2004. In Ms Kroes's eyes, that gives the yards an unfair advantage over European competitors. The Commission is pushing for Gdansk to reduce its capacity and to cut its three slipways to one.

EU Sanctions on Iran Oil tanker Group Annulled

European Union sanctions on Iran's main oil tanker firm NITC have been annulled after the EU did not appeal against a court ruling that the measures should be lifted, the shipping group's lawyer said on Tuesday. In July the Luxembourg-based General Court, the second-highest court in the EU, ruled there were no grounds to blacklist NITC in the bloc after the company contested the designation. Rulings are typically suspended for two months pending appeals. "We are glad to see the (European) Council accept the judgment of the EU court that the sanctions were unlawful, although it is regrettable that they did not see fit to lift the sanctions sooner," said Rovine Chandrasekera of law firm Stephenson Harwood, which represented NITC.

UN: EU Should Do More in Med Migrant Crisis

UN refugee agency calls for intra-European solidarity. The U.N. refugee agency on Tuesday urged European leaders to do more to help Greece and Italy cope with the migrant crisis in the Mediterranean and to put protection of people at the centre of debate. After up to 900 died in the worst known shipwreck yet, European Union ministers on Monday set out a 10-point action plan and called an extraordinary summit of EU leaders for Thursday. The U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) welcomed the plan as a good beginning while noting its emphasis on law enforcement. "Obviously the devil is in the detail. We need to make sure that the asylum component and the protection of people component is one that is prioritised within these measures," Volker Turk, assistant U.N.

Atlas Elektronik Delivers Coastal Surveillance System

Atlas Elektronik completed the delivery of the coastal surveillance sys-tem, which has been ordered by the Bulgarian Ministry of Finance regarding the completion of the Bulgarian obligations towards the Schengen agreement of the European Union. The Sys-tem, operated by the Border Police (Ministry of Interior), covers the entire Bulgarian coastline of more than 350 km. The contract includes the delivery of the complete coastal surveillance system, whereby already existing radar sites were integrated.

EU Adopts Accelerated Phase-Out of Single-Hull Tankers

Taking a page from OPA 90, the European Union has officially adopted its unilateral plan for accelerated phase-out of single-hull tankers. The regulation was published in the October 1 edition of the Official Journal of the European Union and comes into effect on October 21, 2003. It provides for, among other things, the immediate ban on transport of heavy grades of oil in single-hull oil tankers of 5,000 dwt or above to or from EU ports and the accelerated phase-out of single-hull oil tankers on a schedule tied to the ship’s MARPOL category. The impact of this unilateral action on the upcoming IMO meeting to review the MARPOL phase-out schedule is unclear at this time.

LNG Hub in Galicia Gets EU Funding Boost

The European Union will co-finance with a little over €600,000 from the TEN-T Programme a series of studies to develop a Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) hub in the Port of Ferrol, located near the city of La Coruña in the northwest of Spain. The studies, which were selected for funding under the 2012 TEN-T Annual Programme's priority on new technologies for transport infrastructure, focus on the design of the necessary facilities, infrastructure and procedures in order to supply LNG as fuel along the entire port logistics chain: from the port services to ships. LNG is rapidly emerging as a more environmentally friendly fuel for the shipping sector and its uptake is encouraged by the European Union.

French Patrol Ship Rescues 217 Migrants off Libya Coast

Migrants being rescued courtesy  Guardia Costiera

A French patrol ship rescued 217 migrants from three small boats that had run into trouble off the coast of Libya on Saturday, the maritime police said in a statement. The Commandant Birot helped several dozen people in distress and intercepted two suspected people smugglers, according to the statement. "The intercepted vessels have all been neutralised," the maritime police said, adding that they were responding to a call from the maritime rescue coordination centre in Rome as part of the European Union's operation Triton.

Piracy – French Warship Joins Counter-Piracy Force

Warship 'FS Guépratte': Photo credit EUNAVFOR

The Counter-Piracy force of the European Union (EU NAVFOR), typically comprising 4 – 7 surface combat vessels patrolling the Gulf of Aden and Horn of Africa, has been joined by the French navy frigate FS Guépratte . The 125 meter long FS Guépratte with 3600 metric tonnes displacement is a second-line multi-mission stealth frigate of the French Marine Nationale, in service since 2001. Equipped with a Panther helicopter, her contribution to scouting the seas  for piracy will be highly valued. She is named after the 19th century admiral Émile Paul Amable Guépratte.

Commissioner Doyle Applauds FMC Hosting of Global Regulatory Summit

The U.S. Federal Maritime Commission will host a Global Regulatory Summit in Washington, D.C. on December 17, 2013. The Summit will include shipping and transportation regulators from the European Union and China. "I am pleased that officials from China and the European Union accepted FMC Chairman Cordero's offer to hold this Summit." On October 22, 2013, the Chairman called for a Global Regulatory Summit. "Consultations among and between governments are very important.

$475M Ferry Deal Eagerly Awaited

British Prime Minister Tony Blair said his government will take the needs of domestic shipbuilders into account when it awards a $475.1 million contract for naval ferries. "It is important we take this decision not just on best commercial grounds, but... the best grounds and interests of the shipbuilding industry in this country," he told parliament. But Blair, facing pressure from shipbuilders and oil industry workers fighting to stop the contract going abroad, also said his government was bound by strict European Union rules in awarding the contract. "We're bound in these procurement contracts, since they are not defense contracts as such, we are bound by these procurement contract rules of the European Union, the same way that every other country is," Blair said.

UN Pushes EU on Migrant Rescue Mission

The European Union must urgently set up a rescue operation for migrants at sea and commit to receiving significantly higher numbers of refugees, top U.N. officials and the International Organization for Migration said on Thursday. "The European Union response needs to go beyond the present minimalist approach... which focuses primarily on stemming the arrival of migrants and refugees on its shores," they said in a joint statement ahead of a summit of EU leaders in Brussels. The statement was co-signed by the U.N. human rights and refugee agency chiefs Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein and António Guterres, U.N. special representative for migration Peter Sutherland and William Lacy Swing, head of the International Organization for Migration. (Reporting by Tom Miles


Maritime Reporter Magazine Cover Jan 2017 -

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