The Norwegian Shipowners Association releases its climate strategy – the Norwegian fleet to be carbon neutral by 2050

The Norwegian Shipowners Association (the NSA) released yesterday its new climate strategy. The document, which was personally handed over to Prime Minister Erna Solberg includes several initiatives which aim to reach carbon neutrality for the Norwegian fleet by 2050.

Due to its global nature, the international shipping industry depends on international regulation and coordination, a role held by the International Maritime Organization (IMO). IMO supports the Paris agreement which aims to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees. However, while the strategy so far adopted by IMO implies halving greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, a goal that is already considered ambitious, the United Nations Climate Panel has stated that emissions must be reduced to zero within the same period.

The NSA emphasizes the importance that IMO, which role is to create a regulatory framework that is both fair and effective and universally adopted and implemented, leads the way in the development of climate regulations for the industry. With its newly released climate strategy, NSA aims to take an active role in concretising IMO’s climate goals.

The strategy includes three specific goals by which each NSA-member will:

  • Cut its emissions by 50%, per transported unit, by 2030, compared against 2008-levels;
  • From 2030 only order ships with zero emissions technology and
  • Have a carbon neutral fleet by 2050.

In addition, the NSA will work closely towards national and international authorities, including IMO, with the aim of establishing an international ban of non-carbon neutral fuels by 2050. NSA states that the goals must be achieved through a variety of measures across the Norwegian industry, both by the shipowners themselves and by Norwegian and International authorities.

For the shipowners this includes upgrading the fuel technology of the existing fleet at the same time as old ships are replaced by ships with technology for carbon neutrality. Furthermore, the ship-owners must, among others, take into consideration the whole life cycle of both ships and fuel when planning and calculating their emissions, in addition to reducing friction and optimizing speed.

The NSA emphasizes that the feasibility of such measures by the industry will depend on support, namely funding for research and development of carbon neutral solutions on both a national and international level. In addition, marked regulations must be put in place in order to make it profitable to invest in carbon neutral technology.

A copy of the full report is available below (in Norwegian).

Download Klimarapport 2020
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