Following a meeting during the 2022 Posidonia trade fair in Athens, MAN Energy Solutions and the Union of Greek Shipowners (UGS) have announced their mutual commitment to a policy of decarbonization, especially in regard to the testing and development of alternative fuels and, more generally, the maritime value chain. This recognizes the vital role that engine designers and manufacturers play, and that shipping’s decarbonization requires the contribution of multiple stakeholders.
Established in 1916, the UGS represents Greek-owned commercial vessels of over 3,000 gross tonnes under the Greek and other flags. Greek shipping currently represents some 59% of the EU-controlled fleet and almost 21% of the world’s deadweight capacity.
The meeting also delivered concrete proposals, with both parties agreeing to support Greece’s National Merchant Marine Academy through the contribution of teaching material to the academy’s syllabus, as well as donations of equipment for teaching purposes.
Wayne Jones OBE, member of the executive board – global sales & after sales – MAN Energy Solutions, said: “In MAN Energy Solutions’ view, decarbonization can best be achieved through forging alliances. As ever, Posidonia has proven invaluable as a platform for meeting like-minded partners such as UGS, with its influential position within the Greek – and indeed, global – maritime industry. I am very happy that we are traveling on this sustainable route together.”
MAN Energy Solutions believes that decarbonization in shipping can only happen by decarbonizing the fuels used in internal combustion engines. As large, ocean-going vessels cannot be electrified with batteries or fuel cells, the company is convinced that large combustion engines will continue to power such ships in the future. While fuels like LNG, LPG, ethane and bio-fuels may well bring the global fleet closer to 2050 emission targets, MAN Energy Solutions believes that alternative fuels like green ammonia, methanol, synthetic methane, and green hydrogen have the potential – when produced through renewable energy – to become completely net-zero. As these alternative fuels cannot be combusted in regular, single-fuel engines or be distributed through existing networks, a multi-stakeholder endeavor will be needed to resolve – through research, development and deployment – any safety and availability-related issues and to provide the required port infrastructure.