On the back of rising customer demand for green transportation and technical cap, the container shipping giant A.P Moller Maersk prepone decarbonization plans by a decade. The company now plans to achieve net zero-emission in its’ business by 2040.
With the sea responsible for transporting about 90% of world commerce, global shipping accounts for 3% of the world’s CO2 emissions, and the sector is underneath rising scrutiny to become greener and cleaner.
“When we set the target back in 2018, it was truly a moon-shot target, where truth be told we didn’t have a lot of very specific plans,”Henriette Hallberg Thygesen, Chief Executive of Fleet and Strategic Brands, Maersk told Reuters.
But since then, several technological advances on the vessel aspect in tandem with growing demand for carbon-neutral supply chains from large corporates such as Amazon and IKEA have been observed.
Maersk set a 2030 interim target for a 50% reduction in emissions per transported container, and a 70% cut in absolute emissions from fully controlled terminals.
The company now not only targets its vessels but its entire business, together with indirect emission. The firm, which so far has been able to order 12 vessels capable of running-on carbon-neutral methanol, mentioned its goals to move a quarter of its seaborne freight using greener fuels in 2030.
Thygesen however mentions that the supply of greener fuels has been one of the many fundamental challenges, adding that Maersk is in dialogue with suppliers.
While greener fuels currently account for double the amount of conventional fuels, Maersk’s customers are willing to shoulder the increased price, Thygesen said. “The increase in cost per product is still relatively insignificant,” she mentioned.
Maersk’s targets are approved by the Science-Based Targets Initiative, an independent body the checks goals are robust.
The group is also actively lobbying the United Nations’ shipping agency, the International Maritime Organization, for a global carbon levy on shipping fuels to ensure that zero and low carbon fuels become economically viable and competitive to fossil fuels. “We don’t think it’s moving fast enough,” Thygesen said.