Photo: Courtesy of ECSA

European maritime industry: ETS revenues should support shipping’s energy transition

European shipowners, ports, the cruise sector, shipyards and equipment manufacturers, fuel suppliers, shippers, forwarders and port operators have joined forces and called on the Member States and the European Parliament to earmark the revenues generated from the inclusion of the shipping sector in the EU ETS for the maritime sector.

Courtesy of ECSA

As explained, earmarked revenues should aim to lower the price gap with clean fuels, finance R&D and innovation and the scale-up and deployment of clean energy and technologies on board and on shore.

Investments in port infrastructure, connection to the grid, energy storage and deployment of renewables should be also supported. Finally, support for training, upskilling and reskilling of maritime workers is key to meeting the EU climate targets.

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“The maritime industry speaks with one voice today and calls on the Member States and the Council to earmark the ETS revenues and to support the energy transition of the maritime sector. 80% of the current ETS revenues are already used for the energy transition of the ETS sectors. The Council and the Parliament have already earmarked the revenues for aviation under the current ETS revision. The maritime industry needs to be put on an equal footing, taking into account taking into account that our sector is one of the most difficult to decarbonise,” Sotiris Raptis, European Community Shipowners’ Association (ECSA) Secretary General, pointed out.

“The greening of the shipping sector implies huge investments both on-board vessels and in ports, whilst the return on investment is low and uncertain for port managing bodies. The creation of a dedicated fund which supports the deployment of infrastructure for low- and zero-carbon fuels both on-board the vessel and at shore is therefore crucial to reach the aims the EU ETS is designed for,” Isabelle Ryckbost, Secretary General of ESPO, said.

“The cruise sector is making huge investments in new technologies to lower its carbon footprint. A dedicated fund from ETS revenues will accelerate industry efforts to deploy sustainable marine fuels as well as support the introduction of the necessary portside infrastructure. It is an important example of how public and private sector can help each other to achieve a zero-carbon future and we call on the European Institutions to lend its support to the fund creation,” Marie-Caroline Laurent, Director General, Europe, Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), commented.

“CLECAT supports market-based measures such as ETS which would contribute to lowering the price differential between cleaner and conventional fuels, while respecting the “polluter-pays” principle. A fair share of the revenues generated by the auctioning of maritime ETS allowances should be ringfenced and reinvested into the sector via investments in cleaner technologies and R&D projects to accelerate the market uptake of greener and more sustainable solutions in maritime transport,” Nicolette van der Jagt, Director General of the European Association for Forwarding, Transport, Logistics and Customs Services (CLECAT), noted.

“Renewable and low carbon liquid fuels are key to decarbonise shipping. However it is common knowledge that the cost of these is higher than that of fossil fuels. Earmarking of ETS revenues to a specific maritime fund would strongly contribute to both bringing higher volumes of renewable fuels to the market and speed up the commercialisation of developing technologies,” Angel Alvarez Alberdi, Secretary General of the European Waste-based & Advanced Biofuels Association (EWABA), stated.

“Reducing of the carbon footprint of vessels and creating the preconditions to make the maritime transport more sustainable is important for shippers. Earmarking ETS revenues to help the shipping sector decarbonise will enable international trade to continue,” Godfried Smit, Secretary General of the European Shippers’ Council (ESC), concluded.

The joint letter was submitted by ECSA, Advanced Biofuels Coalition, CLECAT, CLIA, ESPO, eFuel Alliance, ENMC, ESC, EWABA, FEPORT and SEA Europe.