Shipping is one of the oldest industries out there, and it has been a revolutionary force in the world and how we do different things. With the import and export of different products, shipping has given people the luxury of enjoying products they wouldn’t find otherwise.
Despite its many benefits, the shipping industry does do a lot of harm to the environment. It is a big contributor to world pollution and is harmful to the ozone layer because of its CO2 emissions. As it is nearly impossible and impractical to stop shipping, the industry has taken several initiatives to make its operations more environmentally friendly. Let’s take a look at some of these initiatives:
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1. Fuel Change
One of the most harmful aspects of shipping is how it uses fuel. Instead of using dangerous fuel that contributes much to pollution, shipping industries have shifted to LNG. This is a Liquified Natural Gas, and many experts consider it the best alternative to fossil fuels. It is a suitable and more sustainable option as the sulfur levels in LNG are less than 0.004%, per the new regulations for Sulfur content in container ships.
Moreover, LNG also emits almost 25% less CO2. Using LNG is essential if the shipping industry wishes to go green, but they need to ensure that they meet all safety protocols.
2. Speed Change
Slow steaming is also a fairly interesting concept where they slow down the ship’s speed. This way, the ship does not emit as many harmful gasses as it would if it were going at full speed. The Seas have rectified this at Risk organization, which has conducted a study on how dropping the speed by 10% can reduce the harmful emissions by a staggering 19%.
Slowing down the ships didn’t require much effort, so many shipping companies quickly followed the new regulations. It is also beneficial as it reduces the time ships have to wait for their port call. There are no such regulations yet, but slow steaming is one of the best practices to reduce CO2 emissions.
3. Renewable Energy
The shipping industry can make incredible use of renewable energy. Energy from the sun and the wind can help power the ship. The use of renewable energy can help take some load off of fuel consumption. Several companies are developing unique ship designs to help them harness the wind and use it to work the ship. Shipping companies are becoming much greener with alternative methods to power the boat.
4. Port Management Efficiency
To improve port efficiency is to improve the environmental effect of the shipping industry. Many ways can help improve the different procedures at different shipping companies. For instance, if the shipping companies reduce the time ships wait for the cargo at the dock, it can significantly reduce the turnaround time and improve efficiency.
When ships wait for a long time in the dock, they continue to burn through their supply, which contributes to the emission of carbon dioxide. All the big companies who want to reduce their environmental impact want to manage their ports more efficiently.
5. Leaving Empty Containers Behind
Many containers are usually shipped around without any cargo. Not only do these empty containers take up a lot of space, but they can also increase costs. Besides that, it is useless to transport empty containers. To stop this, different companies can collaborate and share containers so they do not have to ship empty or almost empty containers. This way, they can save money on costs and even reduce the environmental effects of empty shipping containers.
6. Sky Sails
Sky sails are a way to harness wind energy to travel across the sea, which reduces fuel consumption. This idea makes use of large kites that help tow ships. This is a very effective technique that does not require high costs and can minimize the use of fuels to power the ship. This can take a lot of load off the ship’s engine. Such designs are very effective and can ensure ships’ success in going green.
All industries need to play their part in saving the environment. Therefore, they must take the right initiatives that can help reduce their carbon footprint. The sustainable shipping industry is still in the process of coming up with environmentally friendly ideas. These are just some of the initiatives the shipping industry is taking, as many more are currently under work. We will see many initiatives promoting sustainability and a healthy environment in the coming years! Large-scale industries must rise and stand to work for a better and greener world. Together we can bring about changes that can help us save the planet and sustain a good life.