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Shipping Customers Want to Go Green

Updated: Apr 20, 2022

Shipping companies and their customers want to go green and reduce their carbon footprint. The major issue is the costs associated with using carbon-neutral e-methanol fuel.

AP Møller Maersk, the world’s largest container shipping company, is advancing its decarbonization strategy by ordering eight container vessels that operate on carbon-neutral e-methanol fuel. Maersk said the eight vessels will enable its container fleet to cut CO2 emissions by up to 1 million tonnes annually.

E-methanol is chemically identical to methanol but produced using sustainable sources of electricity, carbon dioxide, and hydrogen. This means using wind power, capturing CO2 from biomass and the air, and producing hydrogen through water electrolysis. E-methanol production is currently low and expensive.

Shipping is responsible for around 3 percent of global carbon emissions, rising over the six consecutive years between 2012 and 2018 - from 2.76 percent at 962 million tonnes to 2.89% at 1,056 tonnes.

More than half of Maersk’s 200 largest customers have set – or are in the process of setting – ambitious science-based or zero-carbon targets for their supply chains. Corporate sustainability leaders including Amazon, Disney, H&M Group, HP Inc., Levi Strauss & Co., Microsoft, Novo Nordisk, The Procter and Gamble Company, PUMA, Schneider Electric, Signify, Syngenta and Unilever have committed to actively use and scale zero-carbon solutions for their ocean transport, with many more expected to follow.

In June, the world’s largest shipping firm also called for a carbon tax on ship fuel to encourage the transition to cleaner alternatives.

See Euronews for more details.

Container ship at sea fully loaded with cargo
Shipping carbon emissions are rising

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