July 23, 2009
North American ECA proposal makes progress
A U.S. and Canadian proposal to create an emissions control area (ECA) around the coasts of both nations is now churning through the IMO process.
At its recent 59th session in London, IMO's Marine Environmental Protection Committee gave its approval to the proposal.
The ECA would be for the control of emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx), sulfur oxides (SOx), and particulate matter, under the revised MARPOL Annex VI Prevention of Air Pollution from Ships, which was adopted in October 2008 and is expected to come into force on July 1, 2010.
The draft amendments to the revised MARPOL Annex VI concerning the proposed ECA will now be submitted to MEPC's 60th session (March 2010) for adoption (i.e. after the deemed acceptance date of the revised MARPOL Annex VI on January 1, 2010).
Currently, the revised Annex lists two areas for the control of SOx emissions: the Baltic Sea area and the North Sea, which includes the English Channel.