EU Air Emission Directive - EU Directive 2005/33/EC


Published: 17 December 2009 Updated:

We referred in our web only circular on 6 November 2009 regarding EU Directive on low sulphur fuel which comes into force on 1 January 2010.

There has for some time been concern in the industry about the technical problems in switching to low sulphur fuel and the implications for safe operation of the vessel. Members will find this a new publication by INTERTANKO and OCIMF of assistance in meeting the challenges of compliance with the Directive, while and at the same time ensuring safe operation of the vessel. “Guidance for hazard identification for use of and switching to low sulphur marine gas oil in auxiliary boilers and associated equipment on board tankers” can be downloaded here.

The European Commission has also just issued a recommendation on the safe implementation of the use of low sulphur fuel by ships at berth in Community ports. The Commission notes that many vessels have not undergone the necessary technical modifications in order to meet the requirements of the Directive. Ships which fail to comply with the requirement to use fuels with a maximum sulphur content of 0.1 % while at berth should be asked to provide detailed evidence of the steps they are taking to achieve compliance. Consideration can be given to the existence of an approved retrofit plan when assessing the degree of penalties to be applied to non-complying ships. The Commission states that, for these ships that have not undergone technical modifications, completion of the whole process should not take more than eight months.  Members are referred to the full text of the Recommendation which can be found here.

Please also see Questions and Answers supplied by the Commission.