IMO industry alliance intensifies efforts to cut ship emissions

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The Global Industry Alliance (GIA) to Support Low Carbon Shipping – ​a key International Maritime Organization (IMO) initiative supporting ship decarbonization – plans to intensify its work on the ship-port interface to reduce emissions from ships.

This was decided at the recent GIA task force meeting, which took place over videoconference on 14-15 May. During the meeting, 21 participants from the industry and the IMO Secretariat discussed progress on a number of ongoing projects and set tangible goals for the GIA up to 2023.

Participants agreed to continue work under the existing workstreams, including alternative fuels and validating the performance of energy efficiency technologies, and to expand these even further.

They also agreed to embark on an entirely new workstream aimed at creating a “holistic approach to reducing emissions in the ship-port interface”. This will support implementation by ports of regulatory, technical, operational and economic actions to help reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from ships, such as providing onshore power supply and safe and efficient bunkering of alternative low-carbon fuels.

The new workstream will also identify additional measures that could be taken to reduce emissions in the ship-port interface. It builds on the work undertaken by the GIA on the “Just-in-Time” (JIT) Arrival of Ships. JIT operation allows ships to optimise their speed so they arrive at their destination port when their berth is ready for them – cutting the time ships spend waiting outside ports with their engines on, thereby saving energy and cutting costs and emissions.

The group further discussed as to how it could support the financial recovery of the maritime sector to COVID-19. The GIA also considered in detail the aims and objectives of the IMO-Norway GreenVoyage2050 Project and discussed ideas for collaboration, in particular, how to catalyze demonstration and trialing solutions in the GreenVoyage2050 pilot countries.

It was the first meeting of the GIA task force since it became part of GreenVoyage2050, an IMO-executed project, funded by Norway, to initiate and promote global efforts to demonstrate and test technical solutions for reducing ship emissions. The project also aims to enhance knowledge and information-sharing to support the IMO GHG reduction strategy.

The GIA is a public-private partnership initiative of IMO that brings together maritime industry leaders to support an energy-efficient and low carbon maritime transport system.

The alliance was set up as part of IMO’s Global Maritime Energy Efficiency Partnerships (GloMEEP) project in 2017 but is now running under GreenVoyage2050 following a new agreement, signed earlier this year by 14 companies which have committed to financial and in-kind contributions, such as sharing expertise until 2023.

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