The International Association of Ports and Harbors (IAPH) has signed an agreement with the Rotterdam-based Green Award Foundation to administer and expand the formula-based Environmental Ship Index (ESI), which allows port authorities and maritime administrations to reward vessels for improved energy efficiency and reduced emissions. The agreement is to take the popular Index to the next level in terms of full-time administrative support, governance and further expansion.
Since its creation ten years ago, the ESI has become the established standard upon which port authorities and maritime administrations incentivize ship owners and operators to continuously improve the environmental performance of their fleets and use cleaner engines and fuels with preferential treatment offered either through discounts on port dues, bonuses or other benefits commensurate with a specified level of cleanliness. The partnership with Green Award aims to increase the reliability of the index through on-board verifications and to professionalize its administration. The aim is also to expand the range of potential emissions in the calculation, to diversify the fleet currently contained in the database and to increase the number of incentive providers, especially in Asia, Africa and the Americas.
ESI is a voluntary tool that includes a formula-based evaluation of vessels’ nitrogen oxide (NOx) and sulfur oxide (SOx) emissions. The calculation also rewards vessels that are equipped to use available onshore power and which demonstrate fuel efficiency improvements over time, reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) and particulate matter (PM) emissions.
IAPH Technical Director Antonis Michail commented: “The agreement IAPH has signed with Green Award is to take the Environmental Ship Index to the next level in terms of full-time administrative support, governance and further expansion. The ESI has become the established standard upon which port authorities and maritime administrations incentivize ship owners and ship owner-operators to continuously improve the environmental performance of the fleets calling at their terminals. In partnership with Green Award, we aim to expand the range of potential emissions including greenhouse gases in the calculation and will further enhance the separate noise emission functionality. Right now, the strongest representation we have on the Index comes from the container shipping sector, with over half of the world fleet registered. Tankers (gas, chemical and oil) are also well represented with 28% of the world fleet. The focus will be on growing the number of registered dry bulk and general cargo vessels as well as ro-ro and cruise vessels.”
As of this month, January 2021, owners and owner-operators with ships registered on ESI can expect to be approached directly by the Green Award team for certification updates and will also be informed about the new subscription fee scheme that will be implemented to finance further user improvements and the further development of the Index.
Established in 1994, the Green Award Foundation is a global, independent, non-profit quality assurance organization with the primary task of certifying ship managers and vessels that go beyond the industry standards in terms of safety, quality and environmental performance. The foundation works closely with maritime authorities and classification societies provides data to Equasis (the database containing safety-related information on the world’s merchant fleet). Green Award has been an active member and Incentive Provider to the IAPH Environmental Ship Index, having collaborated with the Working Group since its foundation back in 2011.