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Minister of North Sea helps monitor nitrogen emissions from ships at sea
On Wednesday 13 January 2021, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of North Sea Vincent van Quickenborne checked to what extent ships in the Belgian part of the North Sea comply with the applicable air pollution standards. To this end, he flew along in the Belgian Coast Guard plane, operated by our coast guard partner MUMM. Through the application of a 'sniffer' sensor in this aircraft, our country is known as a pioneer in the international fight against air pollution above the sea. The sensor allows polluting components in ship emissions to be measured in the field. Sulphur measurements have been on the programme since 2016, and since 2020 nitrogen compounds can also be detected. With this, Belgium was the first to be ready to monitor above the sea the restrictions on nitrogen emissions from ships that will apply in the North Sea from 1 January 2021.