SO2 (sulphur dioxide) and NO2 (nitrogen dioxide) are very harmful gases for nature and humans. They are emitted by diesel engines without any flue gas filtering. Especially the heavy oil burning marine diesel is harmful. After all, they emit many cubic metres of the gases per minute. Only the ban on heavy fuel oil can help here.
NO2 is harmful to humans and other living beings. You can tell just by the pungent smell and the scratching of the throat. SO2 develops sulphuric acid in contact with water. It is certainly not good to have constant contact with it. Both gases have a very damaging effect in continuous exposure and shorten life.
Shipping is responsible for about 13 % of all SO2 and 15 % of all NO2 emissions worldwide. There are ports where every breath makes you sick.
The “highways” of world shipping can be easily traced by their SO2 emissions. Under “www.windy.com” the routes are easy to find if the world map is adjusted accordingly. Wide brown-coloured paths that stretch across the oceans. It’s time to do something about it.
In a first step, liquid natural gas can be used to make a ship’s exhaust emissions much cleaner. In the second step, we can then switch to using only stored electricity or clean hydrogen. The technologies are developed and available. Only the purchase decisions of the ship operators are still missing.
(Picture by Roberto Venturini)