A total of 23 countries and organizations have agreed to introduce a tax on the cargo ship industry for its greenhouse gas emissions as part of efforts to curb global warming. This decision was announced during the New Global Financial Pact Summit in Paris, according to the French Presidency.
The implementation of this tax would allow the revenues collected to contribute to a fair and equitable maritime transition. Countries backing the initiative include Denmark, Norway, Cyprus, Spain, Slovenia, Monaco, Georgia, Vanuatu, South Korea, Greece, Vietnam, Lithuania, Barbados, the Marshall Islands, the Solomon Islands, Ireland, Mauritius, Kenya, the Netherlands, Portugal, and New Zealand.
This agreement comes just ahead of a meeting of the Marine Environment Protection Committee of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), which will be held July 3–7 to review the climate change strategy. The review aims to align the international shipping sector with the goal of limiting global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees, as the French Presidency stressed.
The cargo shipping sector, responsible for 2.9% of all greenhouse gas emissions, has largely avoided fiscal policies because the high seas are not under the jurisdiction of any government. However, if the IMO initiative comes to fruition, cargo ship owners will have to implement green transition strategies more quickly. It is estimated that the funds raised—approximately $100 billion a year—could be allocated to poorer countries to combat climate change, according to Reuters.