Michelin signs on with French transatlantic sail operator

Michelin has signed a transport commitment with French start-up Neoline to transport 50% of its tires on a pilot line from Halifax in Canada to Saint-Nazaire in France by 2023.

The tire manufacturer described the decision to sign with the cargo sailing start-up as a test initiative to help decarbonise Michelin’s logistics operations.

Neoline’s shipping service relies on wind energy as the main propulsion for its 136 m long cargo ships with 4,200 sq m of sails which it claims will reduce by 90% the CO2 emissions related to transatlantic maritime freight transport.

Neoline plans to open its transatlantic line with a first operating vessel in 2023. A second vessel is scheduled to deliver a year later from a yard in France. Neoline has bagged a host of other clients in the run up to its first ship launch, including automaker Renault and cognac maker Hennessy.

“This first step in carbon-free shipping is fully in line with the CSR strategy of Michelin’s operations. It will contribute to achieving the objective of reducing CO2 emissions from logistics by 15% in absolute terms between 2018 and 2030,” said Pierre-Martin Huet, Michelin Group’s supply chain director.

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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