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What are the latest Emission Control Areas (ECAs) regulations?

Currently in the European Emission Control Area (ECA) vessels must use distillate fuels with less than 0,10% of sulfur.

Taking effect from May 2025, a Sulfur Emission Control Area (SECA) will set the limit for sulfur in fuel oil used on board ships to 0.10% mass by mass (m/m) in the Mediterranean Sea.

In the American Emission Control Area (ECA) the rule is the same but the vessels must also achieve the Tier III stage for NOx emissions (Nitrogen Oxides).

On top of that vessels, much show they are using Environmentally Acceptable Lubricants (EALs) when calling American ports.

In the regulated zones of China, it is scheduled to decrease the sulfur content of the fuel from 0,5% now to 0,1% in 2020.


The latest Emission Control Areas (ECAs) zones are listed below:

The North American area comprises:

 - The sea area located off the Pacific coasts of the United States and Canada

 - The sea areas located off the Atlantic coasts of the United States, Canada, and France (Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon) and the Gulf of Mexico coast of the United States

 - The sea area located off the coasts of the Hawaiian Islands

The Baltic Sea area

The North Sea area

The China ECA zone comprises:

  - The Pearl River Delta,

  - The Yangtze River Delta,

  - The Bohai Bay



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