EU officials welcome stricter sulphur limits for shipping

Tighter limits on the sulphur content of shipping fuel that came into force on 1 January represent an “important milestone” in reducing harmful air pollution from the global maritime sector, EU transport commissioner Adina Valean has said.

Under the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) regulation dubbed ‘IMO 2020’, the maximum permitted level falls from 3.5% to 0.5%, which the UN body estimates will lead to a 77% drop in the emission of harmful sulphur oxides (SOx), linked to acid rain and a range of pulmonary and cardiovascular diseases.

“The entry into force of the global sulphur cap is an important milestone for the entire maritime sector; it will contribute to further reduce emissions of harmful air pollutants, directly benefiting cities and communities around the globe, including important ones on our Southern European shores,” Valean said on Friday.

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