In April 2017 the ins and outs of EU Regulation 2016/1628 have been well explained by a consortium led by Euromot. This Regulation draws requirements relating to gaseous and particulate pollutant emission limits and type-approval for internal combustion engines for Non-Road Mobile Machinery (NRMM), amongst which are IWT engines.
Update Q4 2019: The NRMM Stage V norm is currently technically achievable by the sector in several ways:
Of-the-shelf: it is possible to purchase ship engines with the required certifications regarding Stage V. However, at the moment of writing, only smaller engines are available (<300 kW). EIBIP is hopeful that regular size engines will become available in 2020 from OEM suppliers. Amongst others Caterpillar announced to produce large Stage V diesel engines for IWT and Wärtsilä for gas engines (LNG).
After treatment: the effectiveness of the aftertreatment solutions available to the sector in reaching Stage V emission levels has long been proven. This was done amongst others in several Dutch projects financed by subsidy schemes from the national government and the Port of Rotterdam (monitored by EIBIP partner EICB). The main issue is the formal Stage V certification for these powertrains as there is no formal arrangement yet. Furthermore after treatment systems can be rather space consuming. This hampers the possibilities for aftertreatment solutions in ships with small-to-regular size engine rooms.
Euro VI Truck Engine: the Euro VI norms for truck engines are somewhat stricter than Stage V, so if a Euro VI truck engine can be modified for use on an inland vessel, the Stage V norm will be technically achieved. That this is possible was proven in the Netherlands (again through a project supported by a subsidy scheme for example on the Wantij Vessel). However, the legal Stage V equivalence certification of a Euro VI truck engine in a ship is not yet arranged. The ships that use these engines are currently granted written exceptions with approval for usage, but they are given on an individual basis (per ship) and have a validity of one year only (but extension is, as of yet, always granted). EIBIP partner EICB is in discussion with the authorities to arrange the formal Stage V equivalence within the Innovation Lab Stage V working group.
As can be derived from the points above, the technology is available and not the problem. The Certification issue is currently still the biggest hurdle for broad adaption to the Stage V norm. The issue can be summarised as follows: the normal procedure for certification of an inland waterway transport engine is time-consuming and very costly. Most producers of engines for Non Road Mobile Machinery currently deem these costs as too high, because the market for these engines (inland waterway vessels) is relatively small when compared to the market for mobile machines used in construction. This is increased by the long lifetime of IWT engines, which is so long that the yearly demand for new engines is rather small. At the moment EIBIP/Innovation Lab partners are in discussion with the Dutch authorities to look for options to decrease the costs of certification in order to reduce the barrier for manufacturers to offer Stage V certified engines to the market.