IMO starts project to mitigate climate change impacts in shipping industry


Pix: Modern ship with improved safety measures-Source IMO



An ambitious project to help mitigate the harmful effects of climate change in the shipping industry has been started by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO).

The maritime industry global body has kick-started measures to mitigate against climate change effects with a call for formal expressions of interest to host centres to promote cooperation in the field of maritime technology.

The joint IMO – European Union project, entitled “Capacity Building for Climate Change Mitigation in the Maritime Shipping Industry” will see five Maritime Technology Cooperation Centres (MTCCs) established, one in each of five target regions – Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Latin America and the Pacific – to form a global network.

The MTCCs will receive allocations from the €10 million European Union funding for the project.

They will be established and resourced to become centres of excellence, providing leadership in promoting ship energy-efficiency technologies and operations, and the reduction of harmful emissions from ships.

IMO is inviting organizations located in the target regions with the capacity to set up MTCCs to submit an Expression of Interest to IMO by 15 May 2016.

Each MTCC will be hosted by an existing organization (or consortium of organizations) with credible standing in its region, considerable engagement with industry and government, a track record of regional outreach and the ability to provide the MTCC with in-kind hosting support such as office space, as well as related logistical support.

The selection process will consist of three steps:

1) Call for Expressions of Interest;
2) Due diligence missions to short-listed entities; and
3) Call for full proposals.

The five organizations whose bids are successful will go on to host MTCCs with initial funding support from the project. They will enter into a contract with IMO to deliver mutually-agreed project milestones over a three-year period.

Background information
Greenhouse gas emissions from shipping are expected to increase. Developing countries, which play a significant role in international shipping, often lack the means to improve energy efficiency in their shipping sectors. This four-year project will enable developing countries, especially Least Developed Countries and Small Island Developing States, in the target regions to effectively implement energy-efficiency measures through technical assistance and capacity building.

The project will be implemented through the network of MTCCs which, once operational, will act as focal points to:

  • improve capability in the region by working with maritime administrations, port authorities, other relevant government departments and related shipping stakeholders, to facilitate compliance with international regulations on energy efficiency for ships;
  • promote the uptake of low-carbon technologies and operations in the maritime sector through the implementation of pilot projects;
  • raise awareness about policies, strategies and measures for the reduction of GHG and other emissions from the maritime transport sector;
  • establish a pilot-scale system for data collection and reporting on ships’ fuel consumption to improve shipowners’ and maritime administrations’ understanding in this regard; and
  • develop and implement strategies to sustain the impact of MTCC results and activities beyond the project time-line.

The Call for Expressions of Interest document can be downloaded from the project webpage.


IMO – the International Maritime Organization – is the United Nations specialized agency with responsibility for the safety and security of shipping and the prevention of marine pollution by ships.

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