IMO: MEPC 73 – Prohibit transport of heavy fuel oil for propulsion

Cruise ship HFO

The Marine Environment Protection Committee MEPC 73 of the IMO has adopted the amendment of the MARPOL convention to prohibit transport of heavy fuel oil for propulsion on board ships, not in accordance with the Sulfur 2020 rule.

See explanatory article on the Sulfur 2020 measure of the IMO, which comes into force in January 2020.

The prohibition is related to the fuels used for combustion, propulsion or operation on board the ship informs the IMO, it is expected that the measure will enter into force on March 1, 2020.

The measure exempts ships that have installed emissions cleaning systems or purifiers in the chimneys of the ships.

The main points addressed in the 73rd session of the MEPC committee held since Monday, October 22, include mainly:

    1. The reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from ships,
    2. Additional work on the energy efficiency of ships.
    3. The implementation of the sulfur limit 2020.
    4. The implementation of the ballast water management treaty.


On the same day, the committee approved the follow-up program on the IMO strategy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from ships. The program is intended to be used as a planning tool to meet the deadlines identified in the initial IMO strategy, which includes a series of initial short, medium and long-term measures that would be considered.

However, the committee rejected the proposal for the introduction of an experimental phase in the maximum sulfur limit of 2020, prohibiting vessels of more than 500 DWT from burning marine fuels with a sulfur content greater than 0.5% for their propulsion. . Despite this decision, IMO requested that proposals be submitted on issues related to fuel quality by May 2019.

Source IBIA

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