Sulphur 2020—Carriage ban on non-compliant fuel

From 1 March 2020, all vessels are banned from carrying fuel oil with a sulphur content greater than 0.50 per cent m/m.

The ban covers all vessels globally, including those operating domestically in Australia. 

This ban supports the 1 January 2020 requirement that all vessels must use fuel oil with a sulphur content of no more than 0.50 per cent m/m.

The carriage ban does not apply to vessels fitted with an approved exhaust gas cleaning system or when the fuel is being carried as cargo.

Ships have until 1 March 2020 to discharge fuel that has a sulphur content greater than 0.50 per cent m/m. Fuel can be debunkered to another ship to be carried as cargo, or to an appropriate shipboard or land-based facility.

Reducing the sulphur content in marine fuel helps improve air quality, particularly in coastal areas, and reduce the concentration of harmful sulphur oxides, which can harm human health and the environment.

If you’re not sure about the sulphur content of your fuel, check with your supplier. Australian fuel oil suppliers must be registered with AMSA – check out our register for contact details of local suppliers.

Penalties apply for non-compliance with the 2020 sulphur requirements.

Got a question? Read more about the new regulations or email us at 

Last updated: 

Tuesday 11 February 2020