In the past decade, the concept of sustainable development has evolved in the maritime industry and it is fair to say that the industry has embraced sustainability principles. The importance of maintaining ecological balance through sustainability practices is now at the forefront in the maritime industry, whether it is related to maritime transportation, port development, or infrastructure, sustainable practices are paramount in assessing costs and efficiency. Maritime industry stakeholders have common ground in promoting economic growth, job creation, and reduced costs.
It is incumbent on the FMC to continue to promote best practices in fostering an efficient and reliable international ocean transportation system. In the years to come, international trade will continue to grow and the demands of ocean transportation systems to reduce fuel costs and further improve energy efficiencies will be greater. Today, a majority of the international shipping carriers have implemented carbon reduction plans of action. All maritime industry stakeholders share in the focus on responsible steps to cut carbon pollution to slow the effects of climate change. These actions will leave a cleaner, more stable environment for future generations and contribute to the President’s Climate Action Plan.
The Mission of the Maritime Environmental Committee
The Maritime Environmental Committee (MEC) complements the FMC’s mission by facilitating best practices in the maritime community by recognizing environmental sustainable shipping practices.
The MEC, by way of the Chairman’s Office, designates Earth Day as a time to recognize entities in the maritime transportation industry for innovation or success in developing environmentally sustainable shipping practices. In doing so, we are advancing the environmental initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and recognize clean energy technology.
Maritime Environmental Committee Activities
The Chairman's Earth day award recognizes members of the maritime transportation industry for innovations and successes in developing environmentally sustainable shipping practices. Specifically, this award is to highlight technologies, programs, or practices of the maritime transportation industry that, through efficiency or innovation, benefit our environment.
This is a non-monetary award and no prize money or funding will be distributed to the award winner. This is an award of recognition and past winners have been presented with a commemorative plaque at Commission headquarters in Washington, DC.
The MEC sponsors and organizes regular "brown bag" presentations on topics related to environmental initiatives and research impacting maritime trade. Annually, FMC and the MEC host a forum inviting port authorities to discuss environmental issues impacting America's ports.