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Black carbon is the second largest contributor to human-induced climate warming, after carbon dioxide. International shipping is a major source of diesel black carbon emissions and not yet subject to international regulation.
This paper investigates the contribution of black carbon from shipping to the global diesel black carbon inventory, by cross comparing results from a number of studies. While shipping contributed approximately 7 to 9 percent of global diesel black carbon in 2000, that contribution rose to between 8 and 13 percent in 2010 and is expected to maintain that share under current and planned International Maritime Organization policies.
Available technologies and operational practices, such as fuel switching, scrubbers, and vessel speed reduction, can reduce shipping emissions by up to 70 percent.