Issue Paper
February 02, 2018

Since ships are a major sources of air pollution, ports around the world introduced incentive programs to encourage ships to implement enhanced environmental performance measures. A core focus of these programs is curbing sulfur and nitrogen dioxide emissions from ships, but some ports are also targeting carbon emissions. As a result, a flourishing scene of incentive providers has emerged in Europe, North America, and Asia, in particular.

The ideal incentive program would include collaboration among multiple ports along major shipping routes or in the same country. This would offer a consistent approach to rewarding ships’ environmental performance, and allow them to exchange insights and jointly improve. These harmonized initiatives would allow shipowners to obtain incentives at each participating port on their route, while reducing their administrative burden to apply for incentives.

This paper provides an overview of several major global and country-wide incentive and rating programs for encouraging shipowners and operators to reduce pollution. It provides valuable insights for both ports and shipping stakeholders, and explores various implementation strategies.