Maersk partners  DSGC in world’s largest maritime biofuel pilot

Convinced  of  the  urgency  to  act  on  climate,  a  group  of  Dutch  multinationals -FrieslandCampina, Heineken, Philips, DSM, Shell and Unilever -all members of the Dutch Sustainable Growth Coalition   (DSGC),   will   join   forces   with   A.P.   Moller -Maersk   to   take   a   tangible   step   towards   the decarbonization of ocean shipping.

A pilot, using up to 20% sustainable second-generation biofuels on a large triple-E ocean vessel will sail 25.000 nautical miles from Rotterdam to Shanghai and back on biofuel blends alone, a world’s first at this scale, saving 1,5 million kilograms CO2 and 20.000 kilograms of sulphur.

DSGC members and Maerskall agree that tackling harmful emissions related to shipping is urgently needed, and that cross-industry collaboration is required to develop, test and implement new solutions.

The DSGC members, many of which are customers to Maersk, played a critical role. They initiated and sponsor the pilot. Shell, acted as the fuel supplier for the pilot, and Maersk played the role as operating partner.

Sustainably sourced second-generation biofuels are just one possible solution for the decarbonization of ocean shipping. Longer term, breakthroughs in fuel and technical development (i.e. e-fuels) and the investment into commercial supply chains are needed to achieve significant emissions reductions.

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“DSGC companies join in action to contribute to the UN SDGs. With this initiative we focus on Climate Action (SDG 13). We have taken the initiative to partner with A.P. Moller-Maersk on this important effort,” says Jan Peter Balkenende, Chair of the DSGC.

“This pilot testing biofuel on a cross ocean shipping lane, marks animportant step. However, many more innovations are urgently needed. These can only be successfully developed, tested and implemented in industry collaborations like this.”

Søren Toft, Chief Operating OfficerA.P. Moller –Maersk commented: “To reach our net zero CO2 target by 2050, in the next 10 years we need big breakthroughs.  Maersk cannot do this alone.  That is why this collaboration with DSGC and its members is such an important step in identifying and bringing low carbon solutions to life.

It  laid  the  foundation  for  how  cross-industry  partners  can  work  together  to  take  steps towards  a  more  sustainable  future.  We  welcome  others  to  join  in  our  efforts,  as  this  journey  is  just beginning.”

Søren Toft added: “Biofuels are one of the viable solutions that can be implemented in the short and medium term.  Through  this  pilot,  we  aim  to  learn  more  about  using  biofuels  in  general,  and  to  understand  the possibilities around increasing its usage in a sustainable and economical way.”

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Shipping accounts for 90% of transported goods and 3% of total global CO2-emissions, and is set to rise to 15% by 2050 if left unchecked. The CO2 savings of this journey alone equates to the annual CO2 emitted by over 200 households in a year or 12 mill km travelled in an average car which is 300 times around the world. The voyage will take place between March and June 2019.

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