"U.S. EPA moved closer yesterday to finalizing new engine and fuel standards for the largest ocean-bound ships by sending the draft rules to the White House for review.
If finalized, EPA says the draft rule would drastically cut air pollution nationwide by requiring vessels with large diesel engines to curb their nitrogen oxide and sulfur dioxide emissions. EPA is also proposing to forbid the U.S. production and sale of high-sulfur marine fuel.
The regulation is a part of the agency's broader strategy to control ship emissions. In March, the United States and Canada asked the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to designate thousands of miles of the countries' coastlines as 'emission control areas,' a move that would tighten emission standards on foreign ships operating in those waters. The IMO is expected to review the request at its July meeting, and the designation would go into effect in 2012."