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Maritime industry expected to face net zero hurdles

Alternative fuels are key but the industry has to keep up on using it safely

Shockwaves shot across the industry after the earthshaking revelation of the acute misalignment between IMO’s aim to reduce carbon emissions by at least 40 per cent before 2030, and 2015 Paris Agreement which aimed to limit global warming to 1.5°C (2.7°F) by 2050.

Deeper concerns involved
It became clear as day not every stakeholder can meet the deadline. Many shipowners are now in a mad rush to adopt environmentally-friendly fuels to meet the deadline. Ammonia and liquefied natural gas (LNG) became popular alternatives for shipowners. Apart from ammonia and LNG, hydrogen was also another popular option, albeit it is highly flammable.

However, shipowners’ gradual migration to greener fuels is just a small step. The concept of alternative fuel-powered vessels required extensive research and development. Additionally, crew need to be familiar with operating these new vessels. It would not be wrong to say the future of maritime industry would be a bumpy ride, if it excludes seafarers’ involvement.

Industry observers had accepted that meeting net zero targets is not achievable at this point. Adopting green solutions in shipping is also a migration process that takes time. Seafarers are frontline maritime personnel and they should take precedence in any decisions related to the transition, especially training.

Tony In’t Hout, Director of Stream Marine Training (SMT) highlighted, “The maritime industry plays a vital role in addressing the global climate change crisis, by supporting movement of world trade in the most environmentally-friendly way possible. Making companies around the globe aware of how to handle new power sources and cargos safely and effectively requires a new generation of highly-skilled seafarers.” The prophesy of maritime industry to face net zero hurdles would highly depend on the actions taken today.


Marine Online Media Team
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