The new venture has Eva Birgitte Bisgaard very busy, and very excited. Four months into her new role as Chief Commercial Officer at Maersk Tankers, she has been hard at work to make the Sea Cargo Charter the next milestone in the company’s drive to decarbonization.
“It is groundbreaking in what it can unlock,” says the CCO. “As it is premised on an alignment of vision and collaboration in an otherwise fragmented industry.”
At present, companies across the maritime universe employ a range of different methods to measure greenhouse gas emissions. This has long necessitated a standardization with clearly defined parameters.
“You can only solve the CO2 problem when you have a shared understanding of what that problem is,” maintains Ms Bisgaard. “This is why the Sea Cargo Charter is immensely valuable.”
Introduced by a coterie of charterers in October 2020, the SCC offers a global framework for measuring climate alignment as per the policies and ambitions of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) – that call to reduce the total annual greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50% by 2050 compared to 2008. It establishes a common baseline to quantitatively disclose chartering activities and assess them against set climate goals.
Doing so also takes the load off partners, according to Eva Birgitte: “We will be able to gather data and report on behalf of our partners on an ongoing basis and ensure they comply with latest regulations.”
As SCC is cargo owner- and charterer-focused, Maersk Tankers will be stepping up as a secondary party to claim its share of responsibility. As a service provider, and through Contract of Affreightment, the company has access to cargo and data which it can ensure is in keeping with SCC through required processes and contractual changes.
“In this fragmented industry, we can be a gathering party and help shipowners comply with Sea Cargo Charter by helping them secure the information, data points and reporting stats needed,” says the Chief Commercial Officer. “We can make a real impact as we help our existing and new pool partners to fulfil reporting requirements from cargo owners, making sure their activities are monitored and reported.”
While shipping is the backbone of a globalized economy, it is also responsible for 2-3% of the world’s annual greenhouse gas emissions. The SCC aims to address this very climate impact of global seaborne trade – thus setting a benchmark for responsible chartering. Upholding the tenets of transparency, accountability and enforcement, total GHG emission of chartering activities are assessed relative to a company’s climate objectives.
“The Sea Cargo Charter is an important step to decarbonization,” says Eva Birgitte. “And as a signatory of SCC, Maersk Tankers commits to advance environmental stewardship throughout the maritime value chain.” The company will implement the Charter internally through policies, procedures, and standards. Maersk Tankers will annually measure emissions from its chartering activities and publicly report how these meet IMO targets.