Container shipping update
Sign up for myFT Daily Digest and be the first to learn about container shipping news.
Maersk is taking the biggest step to date to decarbonize the shipping industry. It has ordered eight new ships capable of carrying 16,000 containers, each of which can use either traditional marine fuel or “green” methanol.
This is the first ship order from the Danish Shipping Group, the world’s largest container liner in six years, but Maersk said that as freight rates soar, new ships will replace old ships instead of adding new capacity.
Maersk expects to receive 8 vessels from Hyundai Heavy Industries in early 2024, with the option to add 4 more in the following year, making it the first container shipping company to order large carbon neutral vessels from China to Europe and other countries company. The Pacific Ocean.It ordered a small Carbon neutral feeder ship In February.
The cost of each ship is about 175 million US dollars, which is about 10-15% higher than traditional ships, because it will be able to use both marine fuel and carbon-neutral methanol.
The cost of carbon-neutral methanol is about double-tank fuel, but Maersk executives said they believe customers such as Amazon and H&M are willing to pay for green transportation.
“We put the money on our lips. Henriette Hallberg Thygesen, head of fleet and strategic branding, told the Financial Times that we do feel safe enough to order this Series of ships.
Maersk Said In 2018, given that the life cycle of a ship is 20-25 years, it needs to be a carbon neutral ship by 2030 to achieve the 2050 net zero emission target.
But in the past few years, the shipyard’s technological progress has increased, so the Danish group now only hopes to order new ships with dual-fuel or single green fuel technology, including the largest ship that can carry more than 20,000 containers.
Thygesen stated that the biggest challenge is to ensure enough green methanol for ships.
“We need to increase production significantly. We do feel that there are a lot of chicken and eggs. Therefore, we found that by issuing this announcement, we can break this cycle,” she added.
Since Maersk got out of the financial crisis by building some of the largest ships in history in 2015, it has not placed any new orders for large ships, even though it exercised the option of two other ships in 2017.
Other container shipping companies have been rushing to place new orders because freight rates have soared after the Covid-19 lockdown last year when there was a shortage of ships to cope with the large demand, even though it would take years to build them.
“We all hope to have more capacity today so that we can alleviate some of the customer’s pain. But this cannot be solved by ordering ships in the short term,” Tiegson said.
She added that it is Maersk’s “clear goal” for new ships to run entirely on green methanol. In this case, they will emit more than 1 million tons of carbon dioxide each year, but as a “risk mitigation”, each ship will be equipped with dual fuel. technology.
“These ships will be used for 20-25 years. We don’t yet know what the winning technology is,” she said.
Some critics believe that green methanol makes Trivial Because CO2 is first absorbed in production and then emitted again when burned, instead of isolating greenhouse gases.
Maersk said last week that the green methanol for its feeder ships will come from “biological” carbon dioxide, which means it comes from natural resources and renewable energy.