- WEB EXCLUSIVE
- PE COFFEEHAUS
With the International Maritime Organization's (IMO) adoption of new emissions standards for large diesel ships and their fuels in the middle of this month, the EPA announced it can now move forward with a domestic rulemaking action under the Clean Air Act. When fully implemented, the agency said, the new rule will help reduce harmful emissions by 80 percent or more from large diesel ships, including those that are foreign-flagged operating in U.S. waters.
"Massive reductions in air pollution from these large ships will help 87 million Americans living in areas around ports that don't meet air quality standards breathe cleaner air," said Margo T. Oge, director of the Office of Transportation and Air Quality. "Pollution emitted by ships along the U.S. coastlines and waterways can move inland where it worsens air quality."
In 2001, oceangoing vessels contributed nearly 6 percent of NOx emissions, more than 10 percent of particulate matter, and about 40 percent of SOx to the nation's air pollution from mobile sources, according to the EPA.
Under the new IMO program, large ships that operate in emissions control areas will be subject to more stringent standards. By 2020, ships will be required to use fuel with no more than 5,000 ppm sulfur.