Global or regional regulation EU?

The EU should prioritize global regulation for the maritime transport of plastic pellets over regional regulation


The European Parliament has adopted the position that it wants stricter European regulations for the loss of plastic pellets. Danish Shipping recommends that efforts should focus on securing tighter global rules regarding the maritime transport of plastic pellets, instead of introducing regional regulations within the EU.

A significant majority in the European Parliament has voted in favor of a proposal to limit pollution from plastic pellets throughout the entire supply chain, including during transport by ship. Danish Shipping naturally supports the intention to limit such pollution. However, it is crucial that global rules are established in this area, which apply regardless of where one sails. Plastic pollution in our oceans spreads without regard to borders between countries and regions.

Danish Shipping advocates for clear international frameworks for shipping and urges EU member countries to more actively support the ongoing work in the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to secure global guidelines for the transport of plastic pellets at sea: An important step towards safer transportation of plastic pellets (

 “Plastic pollution is a serious issue. And we must do what we can to ensure that plastic pellets do not end up in the sea. This is obvious. But since plastic pellets are transported in many places around the world, the goal should be that we have global guidelines that apply no matter where one sails,” says Nina Porst, Director of Climate, Environment, and Safety at Danish Shipping.

In the UN’s maritime organization, the IMO, work is already underway on stricter rules in this area. So far, they have adopted advisory guidelines on how to handle plastic pellets onboard. Danish Shipping hopes that these guidelines will become mandatory to follow.

“It is my clear expectation that within the foreseeable future, we will see mandatory global guidelines for the transport of plastic pellets at sea being adopted by the IMO. Therefore, it would also be co­un­ter­pro­ducti­ve if the EU and other regional actors in the meantime started to adopt their own rules in this area. Clearly, the best would clearly be if all good forces working to stop pollution of our oceans with plastic pellets work together to ensure the best possible global rules in the IMO,” says Nina Porst.


The European Parliament made a decision on their position on Tuesday, April 23, 2024, but the final negotiation and adoption will occur after September, when a new European Parliament has been elected. Subsequent trilogue negotiations with the Council and the European Commission will follow.

Read the press release on the European Parliament’s website here and find the adopted text here.


This article is shared by courtesy of Danish Shipping

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