Will IMO 2020 revolutionize shipping?

IMO 2020 – Hintergrundinfo

From January 1, 2020, ships will only be allowed to use fuel with a maximum sulfur content of 0.5 percent. The current standard is fuels with a sulfur cap of 3.5 percent. The so-called IMO2020 regulation is the first in a series of measures by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to reduce marine pollution.

Quick-Cargo sea freight manager Ingo Schmich about the upcoming changes:

Revolutioniert IMO 2020 die Seeschifffahrt ?

I would answer this with a clear YES and consider this step in our global flow of goods through the world merchant fleet to be long overdue. Discussions about climate change and necessary steps have been taking place for decades, with strong lasting changes; this has only been changed through legislation in the last two decades and perceived with a sense of responsibility. A sulfur reduction in fossil fuels, this has also been tightened since 2008 and implemented promptly in the leading industrial nations… here the sulfur content of fuels at gas stations has already been reduced, ultimately leading to the sulfur content being brought to a clean zero in many countries

Civilian shipping with its global merchant fleet will undergo change from 2020 onwards; we are facing a major change. According to the IMO, sulfur emissions will be significantly reduced, I see that too… but not quite as euphorically. The world trading fleet has around 55,000 ships (not effectively verifiable, but these are said to have an equivalent sulfur emissions per year to almost a billion cars) of which a small fraction are already equipped with pollutant filters or machines with alternative fuels such as liquid gas. I see no doubt that the leading industrial nations will implement IMO 2020 promptly and in a future-oriented manner. Then we are only talking about a quota of 64% of the world merchant fleet. There will still be nations that do not adhere to the requirements, let alone these pursue ambitiously.

Nevertheless, IMO 2020 will open a new and green chapter in shipping, many shipping companies and ship owners are already preparing for the step from Q4 2019, the important economic factor is of course equally balanced with the reduction of pollutants. Ship owners and shipping companies are talking about sharply rising costs, that low-sulfur heavy oil is said to be up to $250 more expensive per ton, and new ships with filters or alternative fuels are also being increasingly ordered, costs which will of course affect the end consumer at the end of the chain… I can see it When we invest in the future in our business locations, these are also passed on to the customer and end consumer in terms of calculations.

Every solution when it comes to reducing pollutants brings with it a challenge, which path the individual provider will take (new buildings, conversions to liquid gas or even hybrid models) – this will still remain open, the alternatives are associated with a lot of time. In the end, no one will be able to avoid the significantly more expensive low-sulphur fuel; sea freight QCS is preparing for corresponding surcharges.