Swedish owner celebrates achieving IMO’s 2050 goals three decades early

Swedish shipowner Furetank celebrated today achieving the International Maritime Organization’s 2050 climate goals 28 and a half years’ ahead of the deadline, serving as both a tremendous achievement as well as a sign that the environmental legislation in place will need to be made more ambitious.

The brand new gas-powered 17,999 dwt Fure Viten product tanker left China Merchants Jinling Shipyard in Yangzhou today with a very low Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) score of 4.65 points, more than 50% better than the required score for this size of ship. The Fure Viten is the last in a series of eight ships that the Swedish owner has taken delivery of over the past months – four of which it owns and another four it commercially operates.

Climate change is a reality and we believe that politicians mean what they say

With the delivery of Fure Viten, the average carbon dioxide emissions from Furetank’s fleet has been slashed by 50% compared to 2008 levels, the baseline IMO took when making its 2050 goals.

“Climate change is a reality and we believe that politicians mean what they say. Thus, if we are to survive as a shipping company in the future, we must do our absolute best to reduce our climate and environmental impact,” said Lars Höglund, CEO of Furetank, adding: “We have developed ships since the ‘80s and used our entire experience to optimise every detail. There is not a single system that we haven’t improved. This combination of interacting, energy-saving technical solutions is unique.”

For example, batteries help reduce the use of auxiliary engines, a ducted propeller increases thrust and reduces power requirement, an improved hull shape minimises drag, and the main engine and shaft generator use variable frequency to increase propeller efficiency and reduce fuel consumption.

The eight dual fuel vessels will be operated with liquefied biogas or LNG.

“The next step will be to operate the ships completely without fossil fuels. We are in the process of securing the supply of larger quantities of biogas within a year or so, through an exclusive agreement with a supplier. My view is that in 2030 we will run these vessels largely on LBG with zero fossil emissions,” Höglund claimed today.

Fure Viten and preceding sister vessel Fure Vinga are the very first tankers in Europe that are fully equipped to operate the energy-demanding cargo pumps with 6.6 kV high voltage shore power.

In conversation with Splash, Höglund conceded that IMO’s current 2050 targets already look outdated.

“I believe that EU and may be also the USA and Canada will come up with local regulations as IMO has not managed to take action,” Höglund said.

Furetank, based on Donsö in the Gothenburg archipelago, is a Swedish, family-owned shipping company active in tanker shipping since the early 1950s. Furetank operates nine owned vessels and is a founding member of the Gothia Tanker Alliance: a market platform for small and intermediate product tankers, operating 40 vessels in European waters.

Splash readers can take an exclusive virtual ‘stroll’ around the new Chinese-built ship by clicking here.

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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