From 1st January 2020, a new regulation will come into force to reduce air pollution from ships globally.
Whereas today ships can use fuel with up to 3.5% sulphur content (outside Emission Control Areas), the new global sulphur cap will be 0.5%.
The regulation has been developed and adopted by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), which is a specialized agency under the United Nations (UN). It will reduce sulphur pollution from shipping by more than 80%, and therefore have a very significant positive impact on the environment and human health.
Maersk Line, but a number of other lines as well, fully support the regulation, and their preparations to ensure compliance are well underway. The cost of compliance with the new regulation will be significant, so the cost of shipping will ultimately increase. It is expected that the volatility of fuel costs for shipping will increase as the regulation enters into effect.
In order to allow customers to predict, plan and track how changes in fuel price will impact the total shipping freight rate, Maersk Line will introduce a simple and predictive Bunker Adjustment Factor (BAF). The new BAF will replace the existing Standard Bunker Factor (SBF) and allow customers to simulate and calculate the BAF tariff at any fuel price for a given trade route.
The BAF tariff is designed to recover fuel related costs, and it will be charged separately from the basic ocean freight as the fuel cost is a very significant and volatile part of shipping costs.