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Премия рунета 2017

THE BUNKER FUEL ERA IN THE ARCTIC COMES TO ITS END: RUSSIA OPTS FOR MORE ECO-FRIENDLY FUEL

31 october 2018
At the 73rd meeting held by the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC73) of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) last week in London, experts came to a conclusion that the use of bunker fuel in the Arctic should be prohibited as early as in 2021.

The next important stage in achieving the goal of fuel oil prohibition will be the meeting of IMO's Committee on Pollution Prevention and Response (PPR6) in February 2019 to assess the measures for mitigating the consequences of fuel oil prohibition in the Arctic.

"Today we observe real progress in the mitigation of threats from fuel oil spills in the Arctic both at the global level and domestically," Alexey Knizhnikov, Head of the Program for the Environmental Policy of the Fuel and Energy Sector, WWF Russia, commented. "Thus, we see the ever-greater support of fuel oil replacement for alternative types of fuel both from the governments and shipping companies."

The expert pointed out the crucial importance of the declaration made by the Minister of Natural Resources and Environment of Russia, Dmitry Kobylkin, on October 30 that using LNG as clean fuel should become a norm for the Arctic fleet.

"Emergency spills of fuel oil may turn out a disaster for the fragile arctic ecosystems, and the growth of the shipping industry in the Arctic will lead to increased emissions of pollutants, including soot," Alexey Knizhnkov commented. "So, we welcome the position of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment to replace fuel oil for more eco-friendly types of fuel." 

Earlier, in August this year, Russian President Vladimir Putin and the President of Finland Sauli Niinistö expressed their mutual intention to shift to more eco-friendly fuel in the Arctic, such as, for example, liquified natural gas (LNG).

"Replacement of coal and oil, being today the main energy sources in the arctic settlements, for liquified natural gas to supply energy to the arctic regions within the scope of Severny Zavoz will help to speed up the transition from fuel oil to such types of alternative fuel as LNG," Alexey Kozhevnikov said. 
More information about the possibilities and prospects of gasification of the Russian Arctic is available in the analytical survey of WWF Russia.

 Photo in the announcement: (c) Alexander Skryabin.

For additional information please contact
Oil & Gas Programme Leader