Charleston, SC, USA – August 24, 2022: Barbara, a 304-meter container ship owned by Mediterranean Shipping Company and flagged to Panama, sails into Charleston Harbor.
A collective of firms including MSC and Shell have launched a new strategy to reduce methane emissions from vessels.
According to a report from Reuters, initiative supporters include ship certifier Lloyds Register.
In a statement, the supporters noted there were no globally recognized methods for measuring methane slip – unburned fuel that is not fully combusted in a vessel’s engines – and reaffirmed the importance of clarity in methane emissions measurements.
The Reuters report notes that shipping firms are increasingly trialling low or zero-emission fuels including biofuel, Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG), and methanol.
READ: Maersk signs green bio-methanol partnership with Debo
However, LNG-powered vessels, for example, can leak unburned methane into the atmosphere when a ship is running – a much more potent greenhouse gas (GHG) than CO2.
Members will pilot new technologies to gauge and drive down methane slip from LNG-powered vessels. The statement added that once the solutions have been validated, the collective will look to implement them in industry from 2023 onwards.
Earlier this month the CMA CGM Group announced a new Special Fund for Energies to accelerate its energy transition and achieve net-zero carbon by 2050.
Shipping group Maran Gas Maritime, among the seven partners involved, said it had “long been convinced of the advantages of LNG as a clean burning fuel”.
“However, in light of the strong warming potential of methane releases to the atmosphere, keeping tight control over methane emissions is critical to ensure that LNG’s overall GHG footprint delivers as much GHG reduction as possible,” Andreas Spertos, EVP-Technical Director with Maran Gas Maritime said.
Earlier this month ZIM shipping signed a 10-year LNG agreement with Shell.