EU gets to grips with shipping emissions

Inventory shows marine releases of major pollutants approaching scale of land-based ones

The European Commission has published a first comprehensive survey of the contribution shipping makes to EU emissions of several major pollutants. The findings are informing an emerging strategy to reduce shipping emissions that should include legislative proposals this autumn.

Carried out by UK consultancy Entec, the survey shows that in 2000, shipping movements in EU waters contributed 3.6m tonnes of nitrogen oxides (NOx), 2.6m tonnes of sulphur dioxide (SO2), 157m tonnes of carbon dioxide, 134,000 tonnes of hydrocarbons and 21,000 tonnes of particulates. The bulk of the pollution was concentrated in the North, Baltic and Mediterranean Seas.

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