Rightship’s maritime environmental predictions for 2023

RightShip's team of sustainability and environmental experts give their predictions and ‘ones to watch’ for the maritime industry in 2023.

The maritime environmental predictions for 2023. As we begin 2023, there is hope in the air that change is coming to the maritime industry. This includes outputs from the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP 27). Moreover, UN Biodiversity Conference (COP 15), and IMO Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 79).


The key updates from COP27 include

  • A greater push for green shipping corridors globally;
  • The production and deployment of five million tonnes of green hydrogen by 2030;
  • Launching of a new action plan for training seafarers to provide skills to facilitate meeting shipping decarbonization targets;

MEPC 79 laid the foundation for revising the ambition of the Initial GHG Reduction Strategy toward the decarbonization target. This includes an annual reduction in the Carbon Intensity Indicator (CII) and the implementation of “basket of measures”. Thus, support the GHG reduction goals, with a target for adoption on MEPC 80 (July 2023). This emphasizes the importance of implementing emission reduction initiatives. Particularly, through the usage of green corridors and collaborating with national and international organizations to accelerate climate initiatives.

The Carbon Intensity Indicator, CII calculation  MEPC
CII Calculation: Carbon Intensity Indicator Guide

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Furthermore, emissions regulations got more stringent. For instance, designating the Mediterranean Sea as an Emission Control Area for Sulphur Oxides. Hence, encouraging the use of alternative/ future fuels to reduce total pollutants and emissions from vessels.

This emphasized the need for urgent action. MARPOL regulations got more stringent, such as designating the Mediterranean Sea as an Emission Control Area for Sulphur Oxides. Thus, requiring vessels to use fuel oil of 0.10%m/m sulphur content when operating in the area.

Rightship’s Environmental Predictions

At RightShip, the team of sustainability and environmental experts give their predictions and ‘ones to watch’ for 2023. What’s important, what needs to be done, and who’s doing it already? They examine where the ESG focus is really going to lie for shipowners and managers, charterers, ports, and terminals. Moreover, for others whose lives are intervened by seafaring responsibilities, highlighting some of the main challenges ahead from the sustainability and environmental predictions.

Serene Teoh – ESG Analyst
  1. Actions on crew welfare. ISWAN’s 2020 mental health report was groundbreaking when it came out, and we’re expecting to see more action being taken to support crew welfare practices by all in the industry.
    Read More about Mentally Healthy Ships
  2. The Council of the EU gave the final green light to more transparency required when companies report on sustainability practices. This will have a huge impact worldwide and should be something every CEO and Chief Sustainability Officer is looking at this year. The Council approved the CSRD.
  3. The Ports for People campaign and their Ports Playbook for Zero-Emission Shipping stood out as an important read during this year. Read more about the Ports Playbook for Zero-Emission Shipping.
Aaron Poon – Senior Sustainability Advisor
  1. Keep your eye on the links to carbon tax and carbon pricing connected to European Emissions Trading System. This will have a big impact on vessels traveling through European waters EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS)
  2. Scope 3 reporting is becoming more mainstream as more companies are starting to consider the full supply chain as part of their emissions profile. Learn more from the useful webinars on Scope 3 emissions here: Reducing Scope 3 Emissions 2022 Series.
  3. Companies are asking us more and more for help setting targets to reduce their emissions. Recommend reading the SBTi report launched in November 2022: SBTi launched the Maritime Guidance- Guidance on how to set Science-based target related to maritime transportation. Read More here.
Tam Pham – Sustainability Manager
  1. Green shipping corridors are relatively new topics for maritime sustainability but with far-reaching benefits. Read more here. And on the 2022 Annual Progress report on Green shipping corridors which identifies more than 20 green corridor initiatives across Transpacific, Asia Pacific and Transatlantic regions, Europe, North and South America.
  2. The International Maritime Organisation (IMO) has changed its lifecycle assessment guidelines, looking at calculating well to wake life cycle, and will have a big impact on the future low/zero-carbon fuel choices for ship owners, charterers, and ports. Read more about the IMO Lifecycle GHG – carbon intensity guidelines
  3. We’ll see an increase in scrutiny of Modern Slavery risks due diligence within the maritime shipping supply chain. Read more on Maritime Human Rights Risks and the COVID-19 Crew Change Crisis.
mepc 79 imo
MEPC 79 – New amendments & IMO GHG Strategy

What are the new amendments and GHG strategy that resulted from the IMO MEPC 79? This is everything you need to know.

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Jon Lane – Environmental Manager
  1. Developments in future fuels. With a target of 5% zero carbon future fuels by 2030 to allow decarbonization by 2050, the race is on. There are lots of exciting partnerships in this space and the development of Green Corridors can help solve the chicken-and-egg question of infrastructure, supply and demand of alternative fuels. Whilst the safety side is important, the environmental impact of any release of this fuel into the marine environment also needs to be considered. Further thought dedicated to this important topic is required this year and beyond such as this investigation into Ammonia at Sea.
  2. Biodiversity and biofouling, including marine growth on the vessel hull, propellers and appendages will gain increased focus. Transferring invasive species outside of their natural habitat can cause serious ecological damage, and at the same time, their attachment makes the vessel less operationally efficient. With the advent of CII, shipowners who plan to avoid biofouling may not only achieve a win for the environment but may improve their operational efficiency and reduce their fuel consumption and emissions, whilst also ensuring they continue to have unrestricted access to ports. Read more here.
  3. MEPC80 will convene at the IMO in London in July 2023. MEPC79 has laid the groundwork for the strengthening of the organization’s decarbonization ambitions in line with net zero, and the adoption of a revised IMO GHG Strategy appears to be on the cards. Read more here.
Milly Chambers – Sustainability Advisor
  1. Developments in the US Carbon Trading Scheme, who are expecting to expand the sale of carbon credits with the aim to allow for developing countries to move towards renewable energy generation. Emissions Trading Resources
  2. Going beyond emissions, we’re seeing an increased focus on the environmental impact of a vessel, including the disposal of plastic and waste onboard vessels and how ports play a key role in ensuring equitable and efficient disposal programs.
  3. Ballast water monitoring and effective mitigation techniques discussed at the International Maritime Organisation’s (IMO) Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) 79 meeting in Dec 2022 will be top of the list for shipowners and ports. MEPC-79

Source: Rightship – Sustainability & Environmental predictions

See Also
SEEMP Part 3 - Easy compliance for 2023
SEEMP Part 3 – Easy compliance for 2023

Shipowners rush to calculate the attained CII Rating of the fleet to include in SEEMP Part 3 when it is not needed. Why?

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