Brussels - In a move supported by Seas At Risk and other environment NGOs Seven of the eight political groups in the European Parliament’s Environment Committee have written to the 28 EU Environment Ministers to insist that shipping and aviation be included in any global climate deal negotiated in Paris this November.

The letter comes ahead of a meeting of the EU’s Environment Council this Friday, where member states will work to coordinate their position in advance of the UNCCC COP21 climate talks. The EU has committed itself to the agreed maximum of 2 degrees warming, but draft negotiations have not yet accounted for the huge growth potential of emissions from shipping (and aviation) that threaten to negate savings in other sectors.

Seas At Risk, as part of the Clean Shipping Coalition, has been working to highlight the need for a serious CO2 reduction target for the shipping sector. Such a mandatory target will be essential to prevent a huge increase in shipping emissions of up to 250% by 2050. The political groups, representing an overwhelming majority of MEPs, have called on EU governments to ensure that the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) increases its climate ambition and adopt measures to limit and reduce the sectors’ emissions. As recently as last May the IMO delayed consideration of a system of emissions targets for shipping, despite an abundance of low cost mitigation options. The hope now is that an agreement in Paris will include shipping (and aviation) emissions and put the subject of emissions targets and measures firmly back on the IMO’s agenda.

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