WWF, Oxfam and Ship Owners Band Together To Reduce Emissions from Shipping

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In the long struggle to address climate change, it’s not common that a trade association of a heavy-emitting sector joins forces with WWF to call for regulation on emission reductions for that sector.

However, this is precisely what happened in Durban, South Africa, at the ongoing United Nations Climate Change Conference. On November 29, Oxfam, WWF and the International Chamber of Shipping (which represents over 80% of the world merchant fleet) called on delegates to the 17th Conference of Parties (COP17) to give the International Maritime Organization (IMO) clear guidance on continuing its work on reducing shipping emissions, through the development of Market Based Measures (MBMs) that are global in nature and take account of the best interests of developing countries.

Samantha Smith, Leader of WWF’s Global Climate and Energy Initiative, said:

“We are very pleased that the shipping industry acknowledges its responsibility to play its part in further reducing greenhouse gas emissions. With around 3% of the world’s total emissions, full participation of the shipping sector will help greatly towards keeping global warming below the 2°C target agreed by governments. Putting a charge on carbon in the global shipping sector can have huge benefits in meeting our climate change objectives.”

“We agree with ship owners that the best place to work out the details of how shipping’s emissions can be tackled using Market Based Measures will be at the International Maritime Organization, and that a strong political signal by political leaders in Durban showing their determination to make progress on this will help accelerate that process.”

This statement builds upon WWF and Oxfam’s report, Out of the Bunker: Time for a Fair Deal on Shipping Emissions (5 September 2011), where we outline the principles for a global mechanism that reduces emissions without hurting the industry or adversely affecting developing countries.

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