New climate demands will spread far beyond Europe’s borders

(Transport and Environment, 31 Jan 2024) By Jacob Armstrong, sustainable shipping manager at T&E, and Felix Klann, junior shipping analyst at T&E.

Everyone in the shipping industry knows how difficult it is to turn a ship around when it’s at full steam.

But that’s exactly what the EU set out to do, when it introduced the world’s first regional green laws for the shipping industry back in 2021. And—contrary to what many may think—it’s succeeding.

Last year T&E published a paper looking at the impact of the EU’s climate action on shipping pollution.

We found that in 2019, four out of every 10 ships globally visited a port in the European Economic Area in that year alone. Looking at the ships that also visited China and the US, this number went up to over 8 out of 10 ships.

With this in mind, we were able to say that these three major economies could regulate the vast majority of global shipping, bringing order to the wild west of the high seas. Call it the “Brussels-Beijing-Baltimore” Effect. 

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Transport and Environment, 31 Jan 2024: New climate demands will spread far beyond Europe’s borders