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The International Association of Dry Cargo Shipowners (INTERCARGO) has acknowledged the technical and operational measures adopted at the 76th session of the IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 76) to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of international shipping - but warns that there can be no compromise when it comes to safety.

As previously reported, the Energy Efficiency Existing Ship Index (EEXI) was one of a raft of measures agreed at MEPC last week.

However, INTERCARGO said that for calculating a vessel’s EEX, the use of 83% maximum continuous rating (MCR) limited as the power of main engines may have ‘significant safety consequences’.

The association noted that initial calculations indicate that some bulkers may have to limit their power by 40%. Although the power limitation is overridable, INTERCARGO said it has concerns on how this will work in practice - especially when minimum safe power, crew, vessel, and cargo safety are considered.

Dimitris Fafalios, Chairman of INTERCARGO said: ‘We note the measures adopted by IMO thus far but must remind the industry that bulk carriers are highly efficient, and already operate within very tightly defined technical and operational parameters. Bulk operators are faced with the very real dilemma of determining exactly how to further improve the operational performance of already efficient ships, especially following adoption of the technological solutions currently available.’

Fafalios continued: ‘Imposing further technical and operational constraints beyond given limits that cannot be overridden in practice, inevitably brings forward safety considerations that cannot be ignored. INTERCARGO will be closely looking into these safety dimensions associated with shipping’s decarbonisation and will bring them forward to IMO’s Committees as needed for their due consideration.’

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