Rotterdam - The Port of Rotterdam has installed an air quality sensor, an application with real-time readings displays vessel emissions for inspectors when vessels enter or leave the port. This is one of the additional measures it is taking to monitor sulphur dioxide emissions from shipping.
Stricter regulations from the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) are placing significant restrictions on sulphur emissions from shipping. In protected areas, such as the North Sea, a maximum permitted sulphur level of 0.1% has already applied since 2015. As of 1 January 2020, sea-going vessels on the world’s oceans may only use fuel with a sulphur content of no more than 0.5%. The current maximum is 3.5%. High-sulphur fuel will only be permitted on vessels that have scrubbers - an installed filtration system - on board.
In recent years, government officials have observed that approximately 95 per cent of vessels arriving in Rotterdam complies with the sulphur regulations. In addition to the standard inspections in the Port of Rotterdam, they will also be sampling sea-going vessels’ so-called bunker tanks from 2020. From that point, vessels without scrubbers may no longer have fuel containing sulphur levels higher than 0.5% in their tanks.