Policy update

Marine engine emission standards for China's domestic vessels

On August 30, 2016, China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection (MEP) and the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ) jointly released the first-ever national emission standards for marine engines used in domestic shipping in China. Phase I standards will take effect on July 1, 2018, and stricter Phase II standards will take effect on July 1, 2021.

China’s MEP estimated that the Phase I engine standards will cut particulate matter (PM) emissions from marine engines by 70% and nitrogen oxide (NOX) emissions by more than 20%, and Phase II engine standards will provide additional reductions of 40% and 20% for PM and NOX, respectively.

If all river ships use regular diesel (10 ppm sulfur content) and all coastal ships use low-sulfur fuel (less than 5,000 ppm sulfur content) during Phase I, sulfur oxide (SOX) emissions could be cut by 540,000 tonnes per year and PM by 40,000 tonnes per year. Subsequently, if all coastal ships use fuel with less than 1,000 ppm sulfur content during Phase II, emissions will be further reduced by 110,000 and 10,000 tonnes per year for SOX and PM, respectively.