CMA CGM, IKEA to test marine biofuel on containership

CMA CGM, IKEA to test marine biofuel on containership

The logistics arm of retail giant IKEA has teamed up with French shipping group CMA CGM and others to test the use of sustainable marine bio-fuel oil on board a modern containership.

The first-its-kind-test was announced Tuesday by the GoodShipping Program, a not for profit initiative seeking to decarbonize the ocean freight industry. Participants involved include IKEA Transport & Logistics Services, CMA CGM and the Port of Rotterdam, as well as marine biofuel maker GoodFuels.

The test will commence with the bunkering of marine bio-fuel oil on a CMA CGM container vessel on March 19th at the Port of Rotterdam.

The GoodShipping program described the trial as a landmark test and major step towards decarbonization in ocean freight shipping.

The biofuel to be used has been developed by GoodFuels and can be used without any engine modifications. The fuel is completely derived from forest residues and waste oil products, and is expected to deliver 80-90% well-to-propeller CO2 reduction compared to fossil fuel equivalents and virtually eliminate sulphur oxide (SOx) emissions.

Participants in the program are hoping the trial can show the scalability and technical compliance of sustainable marine biofuel leading to the its wider commercial use within the maritime industry, establishing it as a viable option to curbing greenhouse gas and sulphur oxide emissions.

“The aim of our program has always been not only to reduce carbon emissions from shipping, but to show that the means to accelerate the energy transition are already available for the sector to grasp,” said Dirk Kronemeijer, CEO of The GoodShipping Program.

The announcement comes as the maritime industry braces for the January 1, 2020 implementation of new International Maritime Organization regulations limiting the sulphur content of fuels used by ships to 0.5%, down from the current limit of 3.5%, among other initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from shipping.

“In a few days, we will be testing second-generation biofuel in one of CMA CGM’s vessels for the first time. Having an HFO-equivalent solution in biofuel oil available with no engineering or operational changes required to our vessel offers a safe, manageable and innovative opportunity to facilitate shipping’s wider transition to new fuel solutions,” said Xavier Leclercq, Vice President, CMA Ships.

Elisabeth Munck af Rosenschöld, Head of Sustainability, IKEA Global Transport & Logistics Services, commented: “Through our pilot we want to show that the means for decarbonisation in terms of alternative fuels are available. We have a responsibility to do our part to reduce the impact of our ocean freight. Through our participation we send a signal to our customers and the ocean industry on our commitment to decarbonise. Only through collaboration can we achieve rapid, necessary change. With a successful pilot completed, our intention is to put the equivalent of at least all our containers out of Rotterdam on biofuel.” 

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