CO2 emissions from ships
Tuesday, 07 February 2012 | 00:00
The latest IMO regulatory developments and what they mean for container vessels.The first formal CO2 control regulations were adopted by IMO at the MEPC 62 in July 2011. These comprise the Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) and Ship Energy Efficiency Management Plan (SEEMP), both of which will enter into force on 1 January 2013.A new International Energy Efficiency Certificate (IEEC) will be introduced for all vessels,
and this includes a supplement recording particulars related to the ship’s energy efficiency, such as the propulsion system, the Attained EEDI for new builds, and the presence of a SEEMP.
Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI)
The EEDI requirements will apply to new ships above 400 GT only, where “new ship” means a ship:
• for which the building contract is placed on or after 1 January 2013; or
• in the absence of a building contract, the keel of which is laid or which is at a similar stage of construction on or after 1 July 2013; or
• the delivery of which is on or after 1 July 2015
The yard, designer or a consultant will have to develop an EEDI technical file containing the necessary documentation and calculations. Verification will be done in two stages: a preliminary verification at the design stage based on tank tests, manufacturers’ data and design particulars. During the speed trial the speed will be measured and the technical file will be updated, together with engine certificates and other necessary documentation. The EEDI technical file will then be verified by a flag administration or Recognized Organisation and the IEEC will be issued.
The regulation differentiates between ship types which are required to calculate an Attained EEDI and those that must have an Attained EEDI below a certain Required EEDI. Ship types needing to comply with a specific Required EEDI level to obtain the IEEC are defined in the table below, which also indicates the time line for the tightening of the requirement levels. See Table 1.
The reference line value of a ship is calculated based on the following formula:
a • Capacity-c, where the a and c parameters are given in Table 2.
The reference lines for container vessels and with the requirements in the different phases are shown in the chart below. The lines stop at the lower cut off lines of 10 000 dwt, below which the required EEDI does not apply. See Figure 1.
In order to address concerns raised by developing countries, the regulations include a clause allowing any Administration to waive the EEDI requirements for ships flying its flag for a period of up to four years (linked to the contract date), or six years and six months (linked to the delivery date) after 1 January 2013. How¬ever, the preliminary indications are that the major flag states will be reluctant to invoke the waiver clause.
Ship Energy Efficiency Management Plan (SEEMP)
No changes were made to the SEEMP at MEPC 62, but its inclusion in the Annex VI amendments makes it mandatory for all ships– both new and existing – after it enters into force. The presence of a SEEMP will be checked during the first intermediate or renewal survey for the IAPP certificate, at which point the IEEC will be issued. The EEDI will not be calculated for existing vessels and thus not included in the IEEC.
Future CO2 regulations
The adoption of the amendments is a significant step towards the regulation of GHG emissions by IMO. Nevertheless, the EU is likely to consider it insufficient in light of its own ambitions. The EU process for establishing a regional CO2 emission reduction mechanism for shipping is therefore expected to continue.
Other parts of the international community also consider these regulations insufficient. There is therefore a strong political drive to regulate shipping further, e.g. through regional or international Market Based Measures (MBMs). Proposals under review range from a contribution or levy on CO2 emissions from shipping, via emission trading systems to schemes based on ship efficiency. If agreed, MBMs may appear towards the end of this decade.
Commercial energy efficiency requirements are becoming increasingly important. The creation of various voluntary schemes for rating environmental performance, including CO2 performance, is providing tools that allow charterers and cargo owners to use only ships that satisfy their environmental requirements. These rating schemes must be based on robust methods and verifiable data in order to create a level playing field for the ship owner.
Reducing the EEDI
Any measure considered for reducing the EEDI must affect one or more of the parameters in the EEDI equation. See Figure 2 and Table 3.
In addition, there will be compensation when using shaft generators (PPTO) and applying ice strengthening (fj). Other correction factors, for example for voluntary structural enhancement, are under development.
Some proposed measures, such as kites or solar panels, cannot provide power all the time and will not enable the main engine power and thus the EEDI to be reduced. At the moment, there are no guidelines for how such measures can be applied to reduce the EEDI, but these are expected to be developed at a later stage, most likely through the Peff parameter. Propulsion efficiency devices, such as Mewis ducts or propeller boss cap fins, are not expected to reduce the main engine power, but will enable the ship to obtain a higher speed (Vref).
Further, the use of biofuels is not covered by the current framework as the carbon content cannot easily be determined. There are no indications regarding if and when this will be developed.
A number of guidelines are going to be developed during the next few years, with the most important being issued before the entry into force in 2013:
• February 2012 – MEPC 63: Guidelines for minimum propulsion power
• October 2012 – MEPC 64: Guidelines on voluntary structural enhancement
• July 2013 – MEPC 65: Guidelines for CO2 abatement technologies
• March 2014 – MEPC 66: Guidelines for calculation of EEDI for roro, passenger, diesel-electric and hybrid propulsion ships
The requirements and dates are subject to two reviews: the first is on the requirements for small ships and large bulkers and tankers and is due in July 2013. The second review allows for a discussion of both the requirements and the timeline for when Phases 2 and 3 are to enter into force, and is due in January 2015.