To promote technical cooperation between Chinese and international maritime sectors, A.P. Moller – Maersk A/S (Maersk), the world’s leading container shipping and logistics company, and China Classification Society (CCS), one of leading IACS member societies, have joined hands with representative Chinese and European enterprises and institutions to initiate joint researches aiming to speed up the decarbonization of the global shipping sector.

On 27 September 2021, Mr. Sun Feng, CCS Vice President, and Mr. Jens Eskelund, Managing Director of Maersk China Limited signed framework agreements at CCS Headquarters in Beijing on behalf of CCS and Maersk, witnessed on site by H.E. , Danish Ambassador to China, Mr. Klaus Rostell, Danish Maritime Counsellor to China, Mr. Mo Jianhui, CCS Chairman & President, and via video link by Mr. Ole Graa Jakobsen, Head of Maersk fleet technology, and Mr. Morten Bo Christiansen, Head of Maersk decarbonization in Copenhagen. Delegates from relevant enterprises, research institutes and universities also attended the ceremony.

As per the agreements, the participants will conduct in-depth researches on feasible decarbonization pathways, innovative technologies and novel ship types focusing on the direction of future energy development and the trend of international shipping’s GHG emission reduction technologies. To this end, three expert groups will be established to carry out researches on risk assessment and regulation development, life-cycle greenhouse gas emission, sustainability and availability of marine alternative fuels, and collaborate on development of methanol/ammonia fueled container ships. Where appropriate, the participants will jointly apply for Sino-Danish inter-governmental science and technology innovation cooperation project.

By partnering, Maersk, CCS and other participants will give play to their complementary expertise to conduct multi-level researches on safe, economic and sustainable use of alternative fuels and technologies in international shipping extended to the whole supply chain, and accelerate the progress of shipping decarbonization.

Decarbonisation is a strategic imperative for the shipping industry. Maersk has been proactively exploring feasible solutions for emission reduction of ships engaging in international voyages, and seeking to develop and apply new propulsion technologies and carbon-neutral fuels for ships. Working together with the industry to study and explore the pathways to carbon emissions peak and neutrality, CCS has made rapid progress on innovative technologies for shipping GHG emission reduction, development of relevant rules and standards, as well as researches on ships using alternative fuels. In the upcoming joint researches, CCS will utilize her technical strength to promote cooperation among all parties to produce solid results.

Ambassador Tomas Ostrup Moller reviewed the closer Chinese-Danish cooperation on shipping and maritime affairs, and stressed the importance of the agreements signed between CCS and Maersk. He stated that “Maritime decarbonization can only be achieved successfully through strong international cooperation and exchange of knowledge… New technologies need to be developed in order to ensure carbon neutrality. Developing and implementing entirely new maritime propulsion technologies and fuels requires international collaboration, due to the scale and urgency of the challenge.”

Mr. Mo Jianhui said, “Maersk is already a front runner in energy efficiency and decarbonisation. By joining hands with Maersk, I believe we can develop the right set of standards, rules, and technical solutions for the benefit of the whole industry. We believe that open-minded discussions and trusted partnerships are key to make that happen, which will also contribute to China’s ambition of realizing the pledge of reaching peak emissions before 2030 and carbon neutrality before 2060.”

Mr. Jens Eskelund said, “Maersk has set a clear and ambitious goal to become carbon neutral by 2050. China, as a globally leading maritime and shipbuilding nation, will be a crucial partner towards ensuring that our industry will be able to respond effectively to the climate change challenge. We are very pleased to join hands with CCS to collaborate on carbon-neutral technologies and standards and explore the opportunities for international cooperation within sustainable and zero carbon shipping.”

Mr. Ole Graa Jakobsen commented, “Maersk and CCS already have an established partnership. The extension of cooperation to research of green fuels and vessel development is adding a new and exciting dimension to our partnership. By leveraging CCS’ research capabilities, we believe we will have access to a broader range of high quality resources to enable our journey towards a zero carbon future.”

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All participating parties agree that collaboration will be key to the decision-making process of researching low and zero-carbon energy used in shipping. As global shipping leaders, China and Europe should enhance cooperation to facilitate cross-sector innovation and knowledge sharing. The partnership of such kind will become a good example of collaboration across the industry to jointly explore the pathway to a net-zero future for shipping, and send a positive message to shipping and ultimately global decarbonization.

Source: CCS

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