MEPs call for stricter limits to ship fuel pollution

The Parliaments’ Environment Committee has voted in favour of tighter limits to sulphur dioxide emissions of fuels used in large ships, which are blamed for acidification of coastal areas.

Stricter limits to sulphur dioxide (SO2) pollution from large ships could be underway if Parliament backs its Environment Committee in a plenary vote scheduled for 1 April. 

The committee voted on 15 March in favour of the report by Satu Hassi (Greens/EFA, Finland) on the proposed directive by 35 votes for, 17 against and 2 abstentions. 

The committee has notably tightened up the timetable for introducing limits to sulphur emissions of ships and called for even tougher emission levels to be met at a later stage in 2010 and 2014. In the first stage, emissions of sulphur would have to be reduced by 1.5% for all ships in the Baltic, North Sea and the English Channel, 12 months after the directive comes into force.

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