U.S. joins Denmark and Norway to lead new push for zero-emission shipping

Written by Nick Blenkey
Jennifer Granholm, U.S. Secretary of Energy.

Jennifer Granholm, U.S. Secretary of Energy.

Here’s another sign that the Biden administration is all on board with tougher shipping decarbonization goals.

The governments of the United States, Denmark and Norway, along with the Global Maritime Forum and the Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Center for Zero Carbon Shipping, today announced that they will lead a new Zero-Emission Shipping Mission as part of Mission Innovation.

Launched alongside the Paris Agreement in 2015, Mission Innovation brings together governments, public authorities, corporations, investors and academia to achieve the goals of the agreement.It is the main intergovernmental platform addressing clean energy innovation.

The new Zero-Emission Shipping Mission aims to accelerate international public-private collaboration to scale and deploy new green maritime solutions, setting international shipping on an ambitious zero-emission course. The mission will also be supported by the governments of India, Morocco, the U.K., Singapore, France, Ghana, and South Korea.

“Through fearless technological innovation, ambitious clean energy deployment, and constructive international collaboration, we can build a net-zero carbon economy that creates millions of jobs and lifts our citizens into greater prosperity,” said Jennifer Granholm, U.S. Secretary of Energy.

The three main goals of the Zero-Emission Shipping Mission are:

  • Develop, demonstrate, and deploy zero-emission fuels, ships, and fuel infrastructure in a coordinated fashion along the full value chain.
  • By 2030, ships capable of running on hydrogen-based zero-emission fuels—such as green hydrogen, green ammonia, green methanol, and advanced biofuels—make up at least 5% of the global deep-sea fleet measured by fuel consumption.
  • By 2030, at least 200 of these well-to-wake zero-emission fueled ships are in service and utilizing these fuels across their main deep sea shipping routes.

“Shipping is on the verge of a clean energy revolution,” said Johannah Christensen, managing director of the Global Maritime Forum. “To set the global maritime industry on a climate-aligned course and meet the goals of the Paris Agreement, zero-emission vessels need to be the dominant and competitive choice by the end of this decade. The Zero-Emission Shipping Mission will accelerate public and private efforts around the world to make a zero-emission fleet a reality by 2030. The shipping industry needs to decarbonize to be part of the solution to the climate crisis. It will not be easy, and we don’t have a lot of time, but it is possible and now is the time to act.”

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