The Marshall Islands and Solomon Islands have proposed by 2025 a $100/ton levy on GHG emissions on all ships without exception with the prospect of this rising either annually or every five years by 30% or 100%.

The aim is to provide a clear signal of the shipping industry’s commitment to decarbonising according to Albon Ishoda, the Marshall Islands ambassador to Fiji.

The majority of the funds would be directed towards vulnerable countries to help them adapt to climate change and mitigate their needs as well as support research & development of new technologies and alternative fuels in line with the IMO’s upcoming regulations.

The Marshall Islands and Solomon Islands highlight that the levy would not be a tax since ‘no payments are collected by any state and no disbursements are made by any state.

The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) co-sponsored by INTERCARGO is also proposing a global carbon levy, without setting a price for the time being. The levy would be applied to all ships exceeding 5.000 GT for each ton of CO2 emitted. The money would go to an ‘IMO Climate Fund’ and be used to fund infrastructure to accommodate alternative lower or zero-carbon fuels such as hydrogen and ammonia.

ICS believes that a mandatory global levy-based system will speed up shipping’s decarbonisation, when compared to any unilateral, regional application of market-based measures to international shipping like the inclusion of shipping in the EU-ETS, which would appear to be more about generating revenues for governments from non-EU shipping rather than actually helping the industry’s efforts to decarbonise, according to Guy Platten, secretary general of ICS.

A global market-based measure seems to be gaining more support.