As part of a wider policy to improve the air quality in ports, South Korea will introduce port fee discounts for tankers proceeding to the port of Ulsan at 10 knots or slower
The South Korean Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries will begin the Vessel Speed Reduction Program in December 2020. Under this programme, ships will have their port facilities fees lowered when they enter ports at a speed below certain levels.
The aim is to reduce particle emissions. South Korea’s director-general of the Shipping and Logistics Bureau of the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries Kim Jun-Seok said “Slow-steaming ships are expected to reduce fine-dust levels. According to IMO studies, when ships sail 20% slower, fuel consumption reduces by about half. We will identify and improve problems during this programme-implementation period, so that it can improve port air quality.”
The Vessel Speed Reduction Program applies to four ports in South Korea and applies to the vessel types particular to the port. In the case of tankers, Ulsan will apply a 15% discount on port fees for tankers entering the port Speed Reduction Area and slowing down to 10 knots to the pilot pick up station. A sliding scale of discount applies the slower the tanker proceeds.
The discount will not apply to tankers that are perceived to have behaved unfairly. This includes:
DNV GL has produced a paper explaining the wider concept being introduced by South Korea, which also includes from 1 September 2020 expanding the use of 0.1% very low sulphur fuel oil in certain cirumstances:
The introduction of slow steaming is not without controversy. It was proposed at IMO Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 74) in May 2019 but no agreement was reached and the industry has mixed feelings on the subject.
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