The Mediterranean, soon to be a low-emission zone

The Mediterranean, soon to be a low-emission zone
The UN agency estimates that the implementation of the regulations will result in a reduction of nearly 80% of emissions of sulfur oxides and 23% of fine particles. Gerard Bottino / SOPA Images/Sip via Reuters Connect

From May 2025, ships will have to use sulfur-free fuel in this sea, where a quarter of maritime traffic passes.

The UN welcomes a “historic milestone” to reduce pollution in the Mediterranean. After more than five years of negotiations, the International Maritime Organization (IMO) approved last week the creation of a zone, known as Seca“control of emissions of sulfur oxides and particulate matter”covering the whole of the sea. It will thus extend “from Gibraltar to the limit of the Suez Canal waiting area”according to the French State Secretariat for the Sea.

Last year, 21 riparian countries and the European Union gave their agreement to this project led by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), during the COP of the Barcelona Convention which forms the framework of the environmental protection in Mediterranean countries. Thus, from 1is May 2025, all ships will be required to respect a sulfur content in their fuel five times lower than the limit authorized elsewhere in the world (0.1% compared to 0.5%). A “Very good news for the…

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