ABS rolls out requirements for onboard carbon capture

Image by Offshore Energy/Illustration

American Bureau of Shipping has released a set of requirements to guide the industry in the application of carbon capture technology at sea.

Image by Offshore Energy/Illustration

The rules have been developed working with shipyards, ship owners, and operators, and they focus on wet scrubbing post-combustion technologies.

“Carbon capture could be a key transformational technology for shipping to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. ABS is working with leading organizations to support the safe development of the technology, which is still maturing but shows genuine promise. The requirements we have developed are a key step toward harnessing the potential of carbon capture to tackle the challenge of the energy transition for our industry,” said Georgios Plevrakis, ABS Vice President, Global Sustainability.

The ABS criteria are intended to be applied to EEA equipment, including SOx scrubbers, Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) units, Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) systems and Exhaust Emissions Monitoring Systems (EEMS).

The classification society said that the document has been developed to provide guidance for the design, construction, installation, and survey of machinery, equipment and systems for vessels and offshore units with Onboard Carbon Capture and Storage (OCCS) equipment.CARBON CAPTURE

The requirements also include an optional Ready notation for vessels based on their level of preparation, or readiness, for future OCCS installations.

With the ever-stricter regulations emerging, OCC is likely to play a role as a bridging solution for vessels that exhaust the potential of energy efficiency initiatives but are yet unable to switch to alternative fuels amid limited availability or other challenges.

Based on the recent findings from Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Center for Zero Carbon Shipping, tankers allow for easier integration (with CO2 tanks on deck) and minimal impact on cargo capacity. Bulk carriers and container vessels present more integration challenges that can lead to significant cargo loss. Ship integration and cost impacts become larger for smaller vessels, so large tankers provide the best business case.

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Various companies are looking into the technology, however, there are numerous barriers for ships using OCC including inadequate port reception infrastructure, low efficiency of the technology as well as its size, and high energy consumption.