EU’s Position On ETS ‘Polluter Pays’ Principle


ECSA welcomes the Council’s strong support for the mandatory pass-through of ETS costs to the commercial operator of the vessel, which upholds the “polluter-pays principle” says Safety 4 Sea.

  • ECSA welcomes the EU’s position on ETS ‘polluter pays’ principle.
  • The European Parliament is looking at a similar position.
  • Council is committing special attention to shipping through specific calls under ETS.


EU Environment Ministers adopted the Council’s position on the revision of the EU Emission Trading System (ETS) and the inclusion of shipping in the scheme, as part of the ‘Fit for 55’ package. According to ECS, the Council’s common position on the pass-through of the ETS costs follows up on the adoption of a similar position by the European Parliament. The retention of the phase-in period and the gradual inclusion of emissions from shipping over a four-year period is also key to ensuring a smooth transition for the sector.

Special Attention 

ECSA also welcomes the Council’s commitment to ensure special attention is given to shipping through specific calls under the ETS innovation fund. However, it believes that this commitment does not go far enough to support innovation. It also does not bridge the substantial price gap with clean fuels.  

“Although European shipowners would have preferred an international solution, we recognise that shipping should contribute its fair share to address the climate crisis at the EU level as well. It is remarkable that both the Council and the Parliament support a similar position on the mandatory pass-through of the costs to the commercial operators, which has been one of the major points we have raised with the EU policy-makers” said Philippos Philis, ECSA’s President.

Council and the Parliament

The Council has also supported a proposal to address the issue of the ice-class vessels. In this regard, European shipowners look forward to engaging with the Council and the Parliament to reach an adequate solution.

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Source: Safety4Sea