Cost of Smoke
Tuesday’s session kept the momentum, starting with the debate on “The cost of smoke”, moderated by Ioannis Efstratiou, Acting Director of the Department of Merchant Shipping of Cyprus. The panel included Georgios Christofi, Head of Environment & Capacity Building Unit of the European Maritime Safety Agency, Tony Paulson, Chairman of the Pollution Committee of the International Group of P&I Clubs, Peter Hinchliffe, Secretary General of the International Chamber of Shipping and Philippe Baumans, Hull Panel Chairman of the International Association of Classification Societies.
This panel debated the air pollution burden imposed by shipping, which in the past years has led to an upsurge of international, regional and national regulations. Some of these regulations will enter into force in the near future while others are on the development stage.
Greenhouse gases (particularly CO2) and Sulphur Dioxide (SO2) are nowadays the key environmental issues on air emissions. Panellists referred to the implementation of the new EU Regulation of Monitoring, Reporting and Verification (MRV) of CO2 emissions from large ships using EU ports and on the further reducing of SO2 emissions to 0.5% worldwide from 1 January 2020.
During the debate, panellists agreed that Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) is maybe the fuel of the future since it significantly reduces air emissions.
From the insurance perspective, it was noted that greener ships will not automatically get a discount in premiums, as premiums are based on claims records. However, a less greener ship has a higher probability to have a worse claims record. Thus, there are indirect incentives on insurance with respect to greener ship.
It was noted that the shipping industry is prepared to take responsibility for its air emissions but it should certainly not be blamed for global warming.
The panellists highlighted that climate change and environmental protection require a global response particularly when dealing with actions from the shipping sector. Maritime transport is widely recognised as an environmentally sustainable and energy efficient mode of transport. it poses such as cybersecurity. The importance of preparing employees and crews on the future technologies through training was highlighted.
Autonomous ships will become a reality, but we should not expect to see unmanned ships for many years to come since seafarers on board cannot be replaced by vulnerable digital systems.
On cybersecurity, it was stressed that cyber risk is here to stay for both companies and ships but cyber risk management is possible and achievable. Therefore, the shipping industry should take protective measures. Personal, confidential and operational information is at risk. The shipping industry constitutes a target for cyber attacks since a lot of information and money is at stake.
It was noted that cybersecurity sustainable investments should be materialiased and the level of cyber maturity should be continuously reinforced as the cybersecurity issue needs to be a continuous improvement process.