Baltic Sea NOx emissions on the rise

The Baltic Sea is one of the busiest seas in the world, accounting for 15 per cent of the world’s cargo. Cargo and container traffic is expected to triple and oil transportation is estimated to increase by 40 per cent by 2017.

A study by the research programme ShipNoDeff has calculated that with the projected annual 5.2-per-cent growth in maritime traffic in the Baltic Sea, the rise in emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx) from ships in the Baltic Sea would not be reversed until after 2030, even if this sea area were designated as a NOx emission control area, which would imply an 80-per-cent reduction in emissions from all new marine diesel engines installed on ships on or after 1 January 2016.

The nine coastal HELCOM countries and the EU have devised a strategic Baltic Sea Action Plan that sets forth a commitment to radically reduce pollution to the sea and restore its good ecological status by 2021. A HELCOM ministerial meeting will be held in Moscow on 20 May to review the progress the countries have made in reducing pollution of the Baltic Sea.

Source: Sustainable Shipping News, 10 February 2010.

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