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ICS, IMO, Green Climate Fund discuss provision of $1.5 million to fast track R&D

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The International Maritime Organization (IMO) and the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) have met with the Green Climate Fund (GCF) to discuss funding options for the proposed “IMO Maritime Research Fund” (IMRF).

The Deputy Executive Director of the GCF, the Secretary General of the IMO, and the Secretary General of the ICS held a meeting in the margins of the “Shaping the Future of Shipping” conference in Glasgow.

The meeting comes shortly after the warning from the shipping industry players that lack of investment in developing green technologies is the biggest threat to achieving decarbonisation targets.

The main goal of the meeting was to develop potential solutions to ensure that developing economies from Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa, Eastern Europe, Central Asia, and the Pacific can access technology and funding for zero-carbon ships and the required infrastructure.

As informed, one solution to be discussed further in the coming weeks is the potential availability of up to $1.5 million from the GCF Project Preparation Facility (PFF) to fast track the creation of the IMRF, a $5 billion research and development (R&D) fund to accelerate research and development into zero-emission technologies to be used by shipping.

According to the ICS, the PPF, to be requested by a GCF Accredited Entity to develop the proposal, could be used to pay for the feasibility and governance work required to set up the fund quickly as soon as it is approved by the IMO.

The IMO is to review a proposal to form a $5 billion R&D programme at its next Marine Environment Protection Committee to be held right after COP26. The fund would be overseen by IMO and financed through a mandated R&D contribution by ship owners of $2 per tonne of marine fuel consumed.

The shipping industry expects the $5 billion fund to be in place by 2023.

“GCF supports the objective of reducing emissions within the maritime industry. The proposed Research and Development fund could provide access to climate technologies for developing countries with the aim of reducing the CO2 footprint of the shipping industry, which would be very welcome”, said Javier Manzanares, Deputy Executive Director of the GCF.

“In 2019, our industry put forward a proposal to create a $5 billion innovation fund to kick start the R&D needed to deploy the technologies required to deliver a zero-emissions future. This would not add a penny in taxes and would provide a fund which could be leveraged by industry and governments. This is a no brainer, something that all governments can jump at to send a clear message that the world is serious about the energy transition and climate goals”, commented Guy Platten, Secretary General of the ICS.

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