Shipping company Maersk will operate the world’s first carbon-neutral ocean liner in 2023.
It will even do so seven years before its initial goal for it that it programmed in 2030.
It so happens that, according to the company, the launch of this vessel was accelerated by advances in technology and growing demand from customers for sustainable supply chains. .
All future new buildings owned by Maersk will have dual fuel technology installed, allowing operations with carbon neutral or standard very low sulfur fuel oil (VLSFO).
“Our customers expect us to help them decarbonize their global supply chains, and we are rising to the challenge, working to solve the practical, technical and safety challenges inherent in carbon-neutral fuels that we need in the future.
«Our ambition to have a carbon neutral fleet by 2050 was incredible when we announced it in 2018. Today we see it as a challenging but achievable goal,» said Søren Skou, CEO of A.P. Moller-Maersk.
Roughly half of Maersk’s 200 largest customers have set, or are in the process of setting, ambitious zero-carbon or science-based targets for their supply chains, and the number is rising.
Maersk’s methanol feeder ship will have a capacity of around 2000 TEU and will be deployed on one of its intra-regional networks.
While the vessel will be able to operate with standard VLSFO, the plan is to operate the vessel with carbon neutral e-methanol or sustainable bio-methanol from day one.
“It will be a major challenge to get an adequate supply of carbon-neutral methanol within our timeline to pioneer this technology,” said Henriette Hallberg Thygesen, CEO of Fleet & Strategic Brands at AP Moller-Maersk.
Both the methanol-fueled feeder ship and the decision to install dual-fuel engines in future constructions are part of the ongoing replacement of the Maersk fleet.
A carbon-free future for shipping requires innovation, testing, and collaboration between multiple industry partners.
Maersk continues to explore various carbon neutral fuel pathways and expects multiple fuel solutions to exist together in the future.
Methanol (e-methanol and bio-methanol), alcohol-lignin mixtures and ammonia remain the main candidate fuels for the future.