Hurtigruten's cruise ship MS Roald Amundsen is seen in the sea near Ulsteinvik, Norway July 1, 2019. The Norwegian shipping company was one of the founders of the Arctic Commitment - a declaration of intent to not use or carry HFO as fuel in the Arctic (Hurtigruten/Handout via Reuters)

Environmental groups welcome ban on dirty fuel by Arctic cruise operators

Share

A coalition of environmental and conservation groups working on more environmentally sustainable shipping practices in the Arctic says it welcomes a decision by 30 expedition cruise line operators to forgo the use of heavy fuel oil while operating in the region.

The Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators (AECO), which represents the majority of expedition cruise operators in the northern polar regions, announced last week a self-imposed ban by its members on the use and carriage of heavy fuel oil (HFO) in the Arctic.

“By formalizing this ban, the expedition cruise industry is sending a message to decision-makers that it is time to act to protect the Arctic from the risk of HFO pollution,” AECO executive director Frigg Jørgensen said in a statement.

Sian Prior, lead adviser to the Clean Arctic Alliance, a coalition of 18 environmental NGOs, said the decision forges a path towards powering Arctic shipping with cleaner fuels.

“That so many shipping and associated companies have recognised the risks associated with HFO, including both oil spill risks and black carbon emissions, by signing up for a ban, sends a strong message to decision-makers in Arctic governments and all International Maritime Organization Member States – who must pay heed,” Prior said in a statement.

“AECO members are demonstrating that not only is it possible to end the use and carriage of HFO in the Arctic, but that the expedition cruise sector is prepared to lead the way.”

In comparison, the conventional cruise industry still has a long way to go towards getting rid of HFO on board its ships: it should take note, and follow the lead of the expedition cruise industry, she added.

AECO’s announcement comes ahead of a decision on global action to ban the use and carriage as fuel of HFO by ships operating in the Arctic by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), which is due in February 2020.

“While we anticipate that a global ban on the use and carriage of HFO as fuel by ships operating in the Arctic will be in place by 2023, it would be wonderful if other shipping operators followed AECO’s lead,” Prior said.

Heavy fuel oil is the cheapest and the dirtiest marine fuel, accounting for 80 per cent of all fuels used in maritime shipping, according to a report by the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT).

In addition to its toxicity, HFO is extremely viscous and breaks down more slowly in the marine environment than other fuels, particularly in colder regions like the Arctic.

The use of heavy fuel oil, also known as bunker oil, is already banned in the Antarctic. Several environmental and Indigenous groups have been campaigning for a similar ban in the Arctic.

Share
Categories: Environment
Tags: , , ,

Do you want to report an error or a typo? Click here!

@*@ Comments

Leave a Reply

Note: By submitting your comments, you acknowledge that Radio Canada International has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Radio Canada International does not endorse any of the views posted. Your comments will be pre-moderated and published if they meet Netiquette guidelines.

Netiquette
When you express your personal opinion in an online forum, you must be as courteous as if you were speaking with someone face-to-face. Insults and personal attacks will not be tolerated. To disagree with an opinion, an idea or an event is one thing, but to show disrespect for other people is quite another. Great minds don’t always think alike—and that’s precisely what makes online dialogue so interesting and valuable.

Netiquette is the set of rules of conduct governing how you should behave when communicating via the Internet. Before you post a message to a blog or forum, it’s important to read and understand these rules. Otherwise, you may be banned from posting.

  1. RCInet.ca’s online forums are not anonymous. Users must register, and give their full name and place of residence, which are displayed alongside each of their comments. RCInet.ca reserves the right not to publish comments if there is any doubt as to the identity of their author.
  2. Assuming the identity of another person with intent to mislead or cause harm is a serious infraction that may result in the offender being banned.
  3. RCInet.ca’s online forums are open to everyone, without regard to age, ethnic origin, religion, gender or sexual orientation.
  4. Comments that are defamatory, hateful, racist, xenophobic, sexist, or that disparage an ethnic origin, religious affiliation or age group will not be published.
  5. In online speak, writing in ALL CAPS is considered yelling, and may be interpreted as aggressive behaviour, which is unpleasant for the people reading. Any message containing one or more words in all caps (except for initialisms and acronyms) will be rejected, as will any message containing one or more words in bold, italic or underlined characters.
  6. Use of vulgar, obscene or objectionable language is prohibited. Forums are public places and your comments could offend some users. People who use inappropriate language will be banned.
  7. Mutual respect is essential among users. Insulting, threatening or harassing another user is prohibited. You can express your disagreement with an idea without attacking anyone.
  8. Exchanging arguments and opposing views is a key component of healthy debate, but it should not turn into a dialogue or private discussion between two users who address each other without regard for the other participants. Messages of this type will not be posted.
  9. Radio Canada International publishes contents in five languages. The language used in the forums has to be the same as the contents we publish or in one of the two official languages, English or French. The usage of other languages, with the exception of some words, is forbidden. Messages that are off-topic will not be published.
  10. Making repetitive posts disrupts the flow of discussions and will not be tolerated.
  11. Adding images or any other type of file to comments is forbidden. Including hyperlinks to other websites is allowed, as long as they comply with netiquette. Radio Canada International  is in no way responsible for the content of such sites, however.
  12. Copying and pasting text written by someone else, even if you credit the author, is unacceptable if that text makes up the majority of your comment.
  13. Posting any type of advertising or call to action, in any form, to Radio Canada International  forums is prohibited.
  14. All comments and other types of content are moderated before publication. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to refuse any comment for publication.
  15. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to close a forum at any time, without notice.
  16. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to amend this code of conduct (netiquette) at any time, without notice.
  17. By participating in its online forums, you allow Radio Canada International to publish your comments on the web for an indefinite time. This also implies that these messages will be indexed by Internet search engines.
  18. Radio Canada International has no obligation to remove your messages from the web if one day you request it. We invite you to carefully consider your comments and the consequences of their posting.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*