Clean Shipping Act 2023 introduced to tackle emissions

Clean Shipping Act 2023 introduced to tackle emissions

Members of the US Congress have presented the Clean Shipping Act of 2023, a groundbreaking bill aimed at eliminating greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from ocean shipping companies operating within the US.

The legislation, introduced by Congressman Robert Garcia and Senator Alex Padilla and co-led by Congresswoman Nanette Barragán, seeks to address the environmental impact of the shipping industry, protect port communities’ health, and combat climate change.

Ocean vessels contribute around 3 per cent of total global GHG emissions annually, with international shipping ranking as the sixth-largest emitter if it were a separate country.

The Clean Shipping Act of 2023 grants the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) the authority to establish and enforce carbon intensity standards for maritime fuel, effectively regulating emissions from the sector.

READ: A Cleaner Future For The Shipping Industry

Congressman Garcia emphasized the significance of the bill, stating: “Not only does this bill drastically decrease shipping emissions in the US, but it brings long-awaited justice to our port-adjacent communities that have suffered the consequences of port pollution for far too long.”

Senator Padilla, in his statement, acknowledged the need to protect coastal communities and reduce emissions.

California’s port communities have been forced to shoulder the brunt of shipping pollution for too long,” Padilla said.

“The health of our communities and the health of our planet requires us forward thinking and ambitious— we owe it to future generations.”

READ: US Congress advances clean shipping bill

The legislation has garnered support from various environmental organisations and major players in the shipping industry expressed their support.

Lee Kindberg, Head of Environment & Sustainability at Maersk North America, affirmed the company’s commitment to decarbonise operations by 2040 and encouraged Congress to pass the legislation, echoing last year’s statement.

The bill’s introduction is a significant step towards achieving cleaner and more sustainable shipping practices while safeguarding the well-being of port communities.

Just recently, the European Commission (EC) has presented five legislative proposals to modernise EU rules on maritime safety and prevent water pollution from ships.

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