Biofuel Advances Benefit Responsible Shipping

Cargo Ship At Sea

Cargo Ships Can Run On Biofuel

As one of the preferred providers of chandling services in Cape Town, Saldanha, Port Elizabeth, Coega, Durban and Richards Bay, the Link Ship Chandlers team always has its collective ear to the ground when it comes to the environmental impact of shipping around the globe. Normally, the news is pretty dire, but today we have the privilege of sharing a very prominent ray of hope!

Ladies and gentlemen, used vegetable oil is about to become a very real, tangible substitute for conventional bunker fuels! The best bit? It’s not even going to require a lot of administration to make the switch. Here’s why this is such great news.

Even though shipping is known to be one of the most efficient forms of commercial transport, the scale of the trade it facilitates is huge. In the third quarter of 2018, just shy of the 90% of the world’s trade went via ship, resulting in a sizeable contribution (around 3%) to the world’s overall greenhouse gas emissions. This is largely due to the type of fuel required to power commercial shipping fleets. Bunker fuels are very heavy and thick and contain a wide variety of contaminants. As such, it ranks quite highly in terms of pollution level, and poses a serious environmental hazard if it should spill.

During a meeting of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) at the United Nations in London in April of this year, a strategy was drawn up to ensure that emissions from the shipping trade will be halved by 2050 (in comparison levels taken in 2008). The GoodShipping Program, a company based in the Netherlands, was the first to contribute to this goal in a tangible way.

Their aim is to make Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (made from used cooking oil by GoodFuels Marine) available to cargo owners and shippers who want to mitigate carbon emissions from within the industry and offset the carbon emissions that would result from the shipping of their goods. Based on the level of their freight volume, the cargo owners can arrange for a switch to biofuels, on the vessels carrying their goods, to offset the emissions that would otherwise be created by the transport of their goods. GoodShipping handles the entire coordination process to ensure that it runs smoothly.

So there you have it – a concise look at the GoodShipping initiative and how it is poised to reduce harmful shipping emissions the world over. The Link Ship Chandlers team keep an eye out for fresh news and information on maritime development in South Africa. Keep an eye on the blog in coming weeks and months for more shipping-related news and expert insight into making sustainable decisions for your shipping business.


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