Responding to the discovery that some of the new blended low sulphur shipping fuels developed and marketed by oil companies to comply with IMO 2020 air pollution standards will actually lead to a surge in the emissions of a Super Pollutant known as Black Carbon, the Clean Arctic Alliance is calling for the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to support an immediate switch to distillate fuels for ships in the Arctic and develop a global rule prohibiting fuels with high Black Carbon emissions
Scientists and environmentalists are sounding the alarm as this new type of fuel can unexpectedly result in high levels of black carbon – a pollutant especially harmful to the Arctic environment.
The anniversary of the Erika HFO spill serves as a stark reminder of the need for urgent action to protect the Arctic from HFO spills, while the recent evidence from fuel oil spills demonstrates that only a few hundred tonnes of HFO could easily lead to an ecological disaster in the Arctic
‘The anniversary of the Erika HFO spill serves as a stark reminder of the need for urgent action to protect the Arctic from HFO spills, while the recent evidence from fuel oil spills demonstrates that only a few hundred tonnes of HFO could easily lead to an ecological disaster in the Arctic,’ argues Dr Sian Prior
“Iceland’s new regulation to limit exhaust emissions with high levels of sulphur from shipping in Iceland’s waters is a positive step forward by Environment Ministers Guðmundur Ingi Guðbrandsson, but fails to address emissions of black carbon, which accelerates Arctic sea ice melt, and in turn accelerate the effects of human-induced climate change,” said Árni Finnsson, of the Iceland Nature Conservation Association. “The only viable step forward is for Iceland to completely ban the use and carriage of heavy fuel oil from its territorial waters, ahead of an International Maritime Organization ban currently in development to ban its use and carriage in the Arctic”.
“With an International Maritime Organization ban on the use of carriage of heavy fuel oil in the Arctic coming over the horizon, we welcome the decision made by AECO’s 30 expedition cruise companies to get ahead of the crowd, and to forge a path towards powering Arctic shipping with cleaner fuels.”
“The Clean Arctic Alliance welcomes MSC’s decision to avoid using the Northern Sea Route to ship goods between Asia and Europe. While MSC have understandably come under fire for their environmental record elsewhere, we note that some shipping companies appear to be thinking about the bigger picture, by recognising how a ‘surge in container shipping traffic in the Arctic’ could have a detrimental impact on the environment.”
The Clean Arctic Alliance will be at Arctic Circle in Reykjavík, Iceland on October 10-12, 2019. We’re involved in running two events involving the risks of heavy fuel oil in the Arctic – one outside of Arctic Circle, and one session on the program. Read on!
Lead advisor to the Clean Arctic Alliance, Dr Sian Prior, appears on BBC World to discuss the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate (SROCC).
An Inuit organization and a coalition of environmental NGOs renewed Wednesday their call for urgent action to ban ships sailing in the Arctic from using and carrying heavy fuel oil (HFO) to reduce black carbon emissions and risks of a devastating spill in case of an accident.