The European Commission in September announced actions to cut air pollution from barges as part of a plan to get more freight onto rivers and canals. Inland shipping is energy efficient and quiet, but it is also the mode of transport with the highest air pollution impact per tonne-kilometre. Around six per cent of European cargo is transported on barges.
Emission limits for new engines from 2014 and possible further limits for existing engines in 2015 and 2016 will be proposed under the Commission’s Naiades II package “Towards quality inland waterway transport”.
According to the Commission, the problem of sulphur dioxide emissions from barges has largely been solved under EU legislation that came into force in 2011, but particulate matter and levels of nitrogen oxides remain to be tackled.
Source: ENDS Europe Daily, 10 September 2013