India set to ban poor performing and older vessels

With CII set to influence shipping, fears rise of a cascade of poor performing vessels into developing regions

India is about to set a regulation to prevent vessels with a poor emission performance rating, or of a certain age, from being deployed in coastal traffic.


Ship operators globally face the challenge next year of having to meet two new key regulations formed by the IMO as its looks at short term immediate measures to curb emissions form the existing fleet.


One of these measures is the Carbon Intensity Indicator which is set to come into play next year for vessels over 5,000 gross tonnes. The CII is to use the data collected from vessels reporting into the IMO’s Data Collection System for ship fuel consumption as reported annually to a vessel’s flag state.


This is being used to give each vessel a rating of A to E to indicate its fuel and therefore emission performance. Vessels with a D rating for three years in a row, or those with an E rating for just one year, need to have changes to ensure they move up the rating.


The rating system is likely to impact the second-hand market according to experts, as well as potentially reshape the charter markets.


The additional revelation that vessels with a poor CII rating could be banned from India’s coastal routes will also have an increased influence.


The revelation came from India’s deputy director general for shipping during the recent IMO forum in London examining how the transition to a low carbon industry can be equitable.


“We have implemented IMO policy on our domestic shipping first,” said Vikrant Rai, Deputy Director General at India’s Ministry of Shipping, “ and we have taken a decision that we will not register poor rated vessels.”
He said this is a policy development that should be completed in December this year, or January next, saying also that there will also be an age limit for vessels, and nay vessels over a certain age, he did not say what that age will be, would be registered off the India flag.


Fears are that tonnage will be sold into the developing regions making it increasingly difficult for those regions to be proactive in their decarbonisation efforts and delaying their ability to transition to new fuels such as biofuels, ammonia, methanol or hydrogen.


India issued it maritime strategy in 2020 for the coming decade, which includes targets for shore power in ports, notably in some of the country’s larger container ports. Ports will have to ensure that large percentage of their electricity supply should be from renewable power.


The same strategy also saw the country push to get 5% of its fuel for coastal ships from renewable sources, notably biofuels.

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