Oceans cover 70% of our planet and nearly 50% of the world’s population live in coastal areas. Therefore protection of the marine environment not only has implications for each country but also significant global benefits. This is especially true for environmental issues related to international shipping, which is truly global in nature; many benefits accrued by more environmentally sound shipping practices at national level will also contribute to delivering global benefits. Emissions from ships to the atmosphere not only impact local port or coastal air quality but also have implications for global warming, climate change and ocean acidification.
In July 2011, IMO member States adopted a suite of technical and operational regulatory measures designed to limit GHG emissions from the international maritime sector. This includes a mandatory Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) for new ships, a mandatory Ship Energy Efficiency Management Plan (SEEMP) for all ships plus a voluntary Energy Efficiency Operational Indicator (EEOI). Based on studies performed, it is estimated that successful implementation of IMO’s energy efficiency measures would reduce shipping GHG emissions by 1 Gt/year CO2 by 2050 against the Business as Usual (BAU) scenario, a sizeable contribution to reducing the projected international shipping’s GHG emissions.
The above reduction is not possible without full and effective participation of the developing countries that play a significant role in international shipping in terms of Flag registration, shipbuilding, human resources and seafarers supply for ship operation, goods export and imports, etc. To achieve the above significant reduction in shipping GHG emissions would require removal of certain barriers so that the developing countries can play their full role in achieving the maritime energy efficiency framework (MEEF) objectives. The priority areas to deal with include aspects such as:
a) Improving the policy and regulatory environments;
b) Knowledge/informational and human capacity developments;
c) Institutional capacity building; and
d) Promoting the deployment of new technologies and processes for energy efficient ship operation.
It is within this context that the GloMEEP project was developed, jointly by UNDP and IMO, and funded by the GEF.