DFDS sets sights on climate neutrality by 2050

Danish ferry and logistics company DFDS has developed an ambitious climate plan unveiling its goal to become climate neutral by 2050.


The company is aiming for a relative reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by close to 45 per cent from 2008 to 2030.

As explained, that corresponds to an approximate reduction of 25-35 per cent between 2019 and 2030.

Image Courtesy: DFDS

In 2019, DFDS emitted ~2 million tons of CO2 of which 90 per cent was from the company’s vessels.

“Continuing to do so would have a negative impact on the environment and climate. It would also put us at significant economic risk: customers will find more climate-friendly suppliers and the costs related to regulatory requirements will increase,” DFDS said.

Three tracks leading to the finish line

Specifically, the plan consists of two overall tracks covering the tonnage adaption in short term and long term, as well as a third track ‘getting the house in order’ that covers all other things like facilities and terminal equipment.

The short-term tonnage adaption plan consists of initiatives to be implemented throughout the next ten years, resulting in close to 45 per cent reduction from 2008 to 2030. It widely consists of minor technical upgrades, including solutions like the use of the correct coatings on vessel hulls and decision support systems. The fleet will also undergo major upgrades, like modifications of bulbs and propellers.

The long-term tonnage adaption plan is all about how DFDS replaces fossil fuels with the new generation of zero-emission fuel.

The new sustainable fuels are renewable energy stored in the form of for instance ammonia, hydrogen, or methanol. Storing, handling and using these new fuels is very different from how things are done today.

“We need to learn a lot to be able to make the right strategic decisions. Projects and partnerships will help us learn and share knowledge and reach our goals. The long-term tonnage adaption plan focuses on our new generation of ships,” according to DFDS.

Finally, the ‘getting the house in order’ part addresses the remaining 10 per cent of the company’s total emissions. In short, emissions that don’t come from DFDS’ vessel-related activities.

Initiatives like electric trucks, energy consumption for buildings and hybrid/electric company cars will engage all colleagues across the business in helping DFDS develop ways of becoming more sustainable. Many of these initiatives are done in cooperation with key suppliers to reduce environmental impact, the company added.

“I am very happy that we now have this ambitious and comprehensive climate action plan in place. It clearly states how we can and will take responsibility for the environment,” Torben Carlsen, DFDS CEO, commented.

“It will also help us stay relevant as a service provider in 10, 15, 50 years from now. With the support of every one of our employees, we will be able to turn this plan into reality and at the same time continue our existing efforts to support the environment and local communities.”