Sweden is a role model for the global shipping community, and other countries have a great deal to learn from the work being done by the Swedish shipping industry to reduce emissions. This is one of the findings in a new report – Decarbonising Maritime Transport: The Case of Sweden – where efforts aimed at bringing about a greener shipping sector in Sweden are described as a “success story”.
Last Friday, the OECD’s International Transport Forum (ITF) published a new report – Decarbonising Maritime Transport: The Case of Sweden. The report examines the various elements which it is stated have put Swedish shipping firmly at the forefront environmentally.
“We are extremely proud that Swedish shipping has been highlighted in this way by such an eminent organisation. It is evidence that a great deal of what we’re doing here in Sweden is on target,” said Edvard Molitor, Environmental Manager at the Gothenburg Port Authority.
The innovation and green projects mentioned in the report have to a large extent taken place within the Gothenburg port cluster. Particular mention is made of Stena Line’s methanol initiative, as well as the Donsö shipping companies Terntank, Erik Thun and Sirius, which are forerunners in the use of LNG (liquefied natural gas) as a maritime fuel.
According to Edvard Molitor, the situation that has evolved is the result of a range of factors, not least the groundbreaking work being done by various organisations in the industry. “Our environmentally differentiated port tariff is a good example, as are the technical innovations at our local marine engineering companies. These are in turn linked to the strong maritime research base here in Gothenburg. In addition, we have shipping companies with a steadfast ambition to invest in green solutions. It is extremely encouraging that the report highlights the cluster effect that is emerging, which is the foundation for where we are today.”
The Gothenburg Port Authority has been working for a long time to create incentives for companies using the port to choose green alternatives. These include access to a shoreside power supply and an environmental discount on the port tariff. Two globally recognised indexes are used as a basis for the discount, for which one-third of the vessels calling at the port currently qualify. Vessels that switch to LNG are eligible for a further discount.
However, the report is not positive on every front. Certain aspects are highlighted that could be improved. It is pointed out that Sweden still has a great deal to do if it is to achieve zero-carbon shipping by 2050 – a target set by the Swedish Shipowners’ Association. If this is to be realised, the projects that are already under way need to be scaled up, which would in turn require further consolidation.
“As a shipping nation, we have a challenging task ahead of us. Good things are being achieved throughout the country but, as the report indicates, public policy support is still required,” said Edvard Molitor.
The full report is available here.