Pollution from one of Europe’s largest shipping companies has increased during the pandemic, according to official EU emissions data.
The data, which was analyzed by the Transport & Environment (T&E) campaign group, revealed that the Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) moved up to 6th place in the EU’s ranking of carbon emitters.
The data also revealed that the vast majority of pollution from the five largest shipping companies was from travel between European and non-European ports.
Jacob Armstrong, Head of Shipping at T&E, said: “For the third year in a row, the largest marine emitter has climbed into the top 10 largest polluters in Europe.
“It is emblematic of an industry that does not pay a penny for its pollution. The fact that a ship operator overtakes coal-fired power plants shows that the status quo is not working. We need a European carbon market that makes maritime transport pay for all its pollution.
Later this month, the European Commission will announce whether companies should start buying pollution permits and using green fuels for these extra-European routes, which account for the bulk of the climate impact of European shipping.
The committee is expected to publish proposals to include European maritime transport in the EU carbon market (ETS) and to establish the first global mandate on sustainable fuels for ships (Fuel EU Maritime Regulation).
Jacob Armstrong added: “Anything less than a carbon market covering extra-European travel gets the bigger shipping companies off the hook and leaves the smaller operators who mainly sail in Europe to foot the bill. It would also mean loss of ETS revenues that could be reinvested in greening the sector. ‘
In the related news, in the April magazine, Air quality news investigated the real cost of buying online.
When it comes to air pollution, shipping products is a big problem, said Aoife O’Leary, director of international climate at the Environmental Defense Fund, “Shipping is extremely cost effective, but one of the reasons it is so cheap is because of the fuels used. When you extract oil from the ground, you refine it, quality raw materials go to planes, intermediate materials to cars, and then whatever is left at the bottom of the barrel is used either to tar the roads or to fuel ships.
Photo by Cameron Venti