EU's ETS 2024 will increase transport costs

Changes to the EU’s ETS 2024 Emissions Trading Scheme will affect maritime transport and increase overhead costs for ferry operators, which will result in higher freight costs.


The EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) has been reformed to include maritime emissions as from 1 January 2024.


It has been agreed to phase in the implementation of  obligations for shipping companies.

  • In the first year 2024, operators must buy allowances for 40% of their emissions,
  • then 70% in 2025
  • and then the full amount in 2026.


Most large vessels will be included in the EU ETS from the beginning. Smaller units will fall under the scope of the regulation for monitoring, reporting, and verifying emissions starting in 2025. And In 2026, they will also be included into the EU ETS.


In a bid to reduce these emissions, vessel operators  will be encouraged to invest in greener solutions. These investments, and the price of carbon emissions, will result in an increase in costs for ferry operators who will pass this cost on to customers.

This tax is for any routes in, and out of the EU. Therefore Scandinavian countries, which mostly use road and ferry transport for goods from the EU, have to prepare for higher cost of freight and, as a result, higher prices for goods.


An inclusion of road transport to EU ETS is postponed till 2027.