Drewry lashes scrubbers as ‘messy answer’ to shipping’s green conundrum

Leading shipping consultancy Drewry has dismissed scrubbers as a “messy answer” in shipping’s ongoing search to reduce its emissions.

In a just published report looking at LNG as a future ship fuel, Drewry said scrubbers cost approximately $4m to install, and users will still be faced with the problem of waste disposal.

“Owners will also feel vulnerable to later changes in regulations that might make their scrubbers non-compliant,” Drewry warned.

Unlike LNG and low-sulphur marine gasoil, the report pointed out scrubbers will not reduce emissions of greenhouse gases, and this is an area that is likely to come under increasing regulatory scrutiny.

A survey of owners by Drewry suggests that they see scrubbers as only a short-term solution.

The Drewry report was optimistic that LNG uptake would be solid among owners in the medium term.

“It is likely that owners will opt for [low-sulphur marine gasoil] in the early years, while newbuildings will increasingly be built with LNG-capable engines,” Drewry predicted.

“More LNG projects will need to come on-line and more bunkering facilities will need to be completed in a short period of time if the industry is to cope with demand for LNG bunkering,” the report concluded.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.
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