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June 14, 2021updated 17 Nov 2021 4:10am

US joins decarbonisation initiative to develop eco-friendly ship fuels

The initiative will be supported by Singapore, India, Morocco, the UK, France, Ghana and South Korea.

The US Department of Energy has agreed to collaborate with Norway, Denmark and other nations in decarbonising the shipping sector.

According to officials, Singapore, India, Morocco, the UK, France, Ghana and South Korea will offer support for the initiative, such as sharing information.

The global shipping sector contributes to around 3% of the world’s carbon emissions and constitutes almost 90% of world trade.

In April, Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry said that Washington would join an international effort to attain zero emissions in the global shipping sector by 2050.

The Department of Energy told Reuters that it would team up with Denmark and Norway to accelerate the development of green maritime and energy technologies.

The department said: “By 2030, we want ships capable of running on well-to-wake zero-emission fuels, such as green hydrogen, green ammonia, green methanol and advanced biofuels, to make up at least 5% of the global deep-sea fleet measured by fuel consumption.”

Well-to-wake emissions are a measurement of a fuel’s total emissions from its production to its use in ships.

The department added that it aims to use green fuels in at least 200 ships by 2030.

There are currently more than 50,000 ships operating worldwide.

Danish Minister for Industry, Business and Financial Affairs Simon Kollerup said that the initiative will focus on making zero-emission ships the “natural choice” for operators when renewing their fleets.

The United Nations has set a goal of halving the sector’s greenhouse gas emissions from 2008 levels by 2050.

The Maersk Mc-Kinney Møller Centre for Zero Carbon Shipping and Global Maritime Forum are also separately involved in the project.

Earlier this month, South Korean shipbuilder Samsung Heavy Industries partnered with Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute (KAERI) to develop nuclear power technology for use in ships.

An emerging zero-carbon source of nuclear energy, Molten Salt Reactor technology is said to have the capacity to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 50% by 2050 and eliminate them completely by 2100.

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