In July 2009, the United States, Canada and France jointly proposed to the IMO to create an Emissions Control Area (ECA) off the coast of the North American continent. The aim of which is to control the emission of nitrogen oxides (NOx), sulfur oxides (SOx), and particulate matter (PM) from ships,
It is expected that the ECA is expected to reduce emission in NOx by 23%, PM2.5 by 74%, and SOx by 86%.
The proposed area of the ECA has now officially adopted by the IMO at the 61st sitting of the Marine Environmental Protection Committee (MEPC).The area extends 200 nautical miles from the base line of the US (including the larger Hawaiian Islands), Canada and the French territories in the North Atlantic of Saint-Pierre and Miquelon but will not extend into marine areas subject to the sovereignty, sovereign rights, or jurisdiction of other States.
The proposed ECA does not include the Pacific U.S. territories, the smaller Hawaiian Islands, the U.S. territories of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, Western Alaska including the Aleutian Islands, and the U.S. and Canadian Arctic.
Emissions regulating the North American ECA are currently Voluntary as of 1 August 2011.
Future mandatory compliance with the emissions regulations are expected to come into full force after a period of one year i.e. 1 August 2012.
Geographical coordinates of the North American ECA can be found in appendix VII of MARPOL Annex VI.
Source of Information:
Loss Prevention Department