Shipping all at sea when it comes to defining decarbonisation

Shipping has no clear understanding of what decarbonisation means in real terms for the industry, a new poll suggests.

Prompted by Eco Marine Power’s Greg Atkinson, a regular contributor to this site, the latest MarPoll, Splash’s quarterly survey, gives readers seven definitions of of the word ‘decarbonisation’, asking them for the one that best matches their understanding of what the term means and/or encompasses. The first four available responses were taken from the websites of a university, a major automaker, a research paper and a safety and standards board. The last three available responses were definitions Atkinson proposed.

Thus far, with hundreds of voters cast, there is no clear leader among the seven definitions, highlighting the trouble shipping – and its regulators – face as they get down to negotiating the best way forward to meet environmental goals laid down by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) for 2030 and 2050.

The IMO does not have its own formal definition for decarbonisation but has adopted a greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction strategy. In November, the IMO will hold an important gathering of its Marine Environmental Protection Committee (MEPC) to try and thrash out short-term measures to cut the sector’s carbon footprint.

Results of the latest MarPoll will be carried in the next issue of Maritime CEO magazine. Other topics in the survey look at the likely recovery times post-Covid-19 for the main shipping sectors, the rise of webinars and the crew change crisis. To vote takes as little as two minutes and there is no registration. To vote, click here.


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