Friday, April 04, 2014

Putin Ploy Prevented -- at Least in the U.S.!

Here is a quick update for those of you who have been following the attempt by Russia to delay for five year the pollution control requirements for new big ships within 200 miles of the U.S. coast:

At a meeting today in London , an international maritime body officially rejected Russian leader Vladimir Putin's pollution ploy.

The bottom line: the U.S. will be able to enforce pollution control standards in 2016 as originally planned in the 200-mile "emission control areas."  That means any big ship built in 2016 and later which enters these clean-ship areas must meet strict standards for smog-forming nitrogen oxides. (There is an exemption for so-called "super yachts," whose owners perhaps will spend money to influence U.S. elections rather than clean up their ships.  The U.S. had not planned to regulate them in the same way anyway.)

The outcome is a victory for breathers in the U.S. Unfortunately, the international body did agree to a compromise that could delay similar health safeguards for those living in Baltic countries and others without existing "emission control areas."

So Putin did get something this week other than a divorce.

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