Photo: By Eric Gevaert / Shutterstock
Royal Dutch Shell has set its sights on net-zero emissions in shipping.
In a new report, Shell highlights the important role that hydrogen fuel cells could play in decarbonizing the shipping sector. It’s also calling for the IMO to adopt a clear trajectory to net-zero emissions in the shipping sector by 2050.
“The shipping industry needs to develop the new technologies, fuels and infrastructure required for a net-zero emissions sector at a pace never previously seen,” said Grahaeme Henderson, Global Head of Shell Shipping & Maritime. “This will require the determination of all of those at the forefront of this transition. We have listened to our customers and partners in the sector and we have set ourselves an ambitious course. I hope that by doing so, openly and transparently, others will be encouraged to join us and help create a net-zero emissions future for shipping.”
The report also highlights the potential role of alternative fuels, such as hydrogen, but notes that a zero-emissions fuel is not likely to be available on a commercial scale globally until the 2030s.
“It is essential that the industry takes action to reduce emissions now with solutions available today,” Shell said. “Efficiency gains are vital in all pathways. Solutions such as wind assist, air lubrication, advanced engine lubricants and digital optimization technologies must all be deployed to close the gap to net-zero emissions as much as possible.”
It also points to liquefied natural gas as a way of helping lower greenhouse gas emissions in the near-term.
Shell has set out several key actions it will take in achieving net-zero emissions shipping. They are:
- call for the IMO to adopt a clear trajectory to a net-zero emissions shipping sector by 2050;
- develop the experience and standards for use of hydrogen in a marine environment and enable commercial deployment of hydrogen across sectors;
- establish a consortium to develop and trial fuel cells on a commercial deep-sea vessel;
- develop a set of performance standards for application on future new-build vessels for all ship types with the aim to deliver up to 25% emissions savings;
- implement a programme of emissions data collection across Shell’s internationally traded time and voyage charters with the intent to publish annual carbon intensity data;
- double Shell’s existing LNG bunkering infrastructure on key international trade routes by the mid-2020s;
- further build the commercial case for our unique industry offering of carbon neutral lubricants through development of our nature-based solutions portfolio; and
- collaborate deliberately and decisively with those at the leading edge of the transition in the sector in order to accelerate decarbonisation. This will include, for example, working within the Getting to Zero coalition, and developing an industry-based coalition covering the entire value chain for US and Canadian cabotage shipping operations.
“Shell is setting its course to help accelerate the shipping sector’s decarbonisation pathway. There is no single technology which will achieve this, and it will be a multi-decade journey. Consequently, Shell’s response will evolve over time. But today, this report seeks to stimulate the opportunities and partnerships needed within the industry so Shell can be most effective in working with its customers and partners on a net-zero emissions future,” it said.
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