Towards Clean and Sustainable Fuels: Matching Supply and Demand
COP28 Session Recap
Advances in technology and better alignment of incentives to use cleaner fuels can play a role in decarbonising the shipping industry.
That’s according to the speakers on a panel “Towards clean and sustainable fuels: matching supply and demand,” at the 28th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28) in Dubai.
Accelerating investment in sustainable fuels, catalysing additional fuel production and fast-tracking innovation, while also supporting legislation and policies that promote the green transition, were among the solutions posed by the panel, chaired by Piotr Konopka, Group VP, Global Decarbonisation & Energy Programmes, DP World.
The discussion took place against a backdrop of growing awareness about the environmental impact of the shipping industry, which – while vital for trade – is responsible for around 3% of global CO2 emissions, according to the International Maritime Organization.
The discussion covered the types of clean fuels, the urgency of achieving zero emissions by 2050, challenges related to incentives, and how best to drive change.
Ingrid Irigoyen, President and CEO of the Zero Emission Maritime Buyers Alliance, emphasised the importance of corporate freight buyers in supporting the transition to clean fuels.
Other speakers, including Bo Cerup-Simonsen, CEO of Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Center for Zero Carbon Shipping, Jesper Kristensen, Group Chief Operating Officer, Marine Services, DP World and Ashwani Dudeja, Group President & Director, ACME Group, discussed the significance of establishing good standards for sustainability and which fuels are considered sustainable, like methanol, ammonia and bio-oils.
While ammonia offers part of the solution, Dudeja said, there is a need for harmonised global standards and a separate need to invest capital in projects to produce it.
Collaboration and competition across the industry are vitally important, the speakers said, as well as transparency and a standardised way to benchmark emissions. Interrogating and revising measurement methods to ensure accuracy will also be needed as the transition progresses.
The cost of all this will probably be shared across the value chain, with consumers ultimately contributing, the panellists said. They agreed on the urgent need to address the industry's role in global carbon emissions, with technology, clean fuels, regulations and incentives all having a role to play in the future.
DP World’s Jesper Kristensen emphasised the importance of efficiency whether conventional or zero-emission fuel types are being used.
“There's just no one solution,” he said. “In the decarbonisation journey, we need to look at being as efficient as possible with whatever means that we have at a given point in time.”