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Shipping Needs Nuclear Power to Solve Its Emissions Problem

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By illuminem briefings 🌎

· 2 min read


illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece here in the Washington Post or enjoy below

🗞️ Driving the news: The International Maritime Organization (IMO) is convening in London to strengthen efforts to reduce the industry's carbon emissions 
• China, the globe’s biggest exporter, is attempting to rally developing countries to resist tighter regulations

🔭 The context: As most ships cannot rely on battery or solar power, the shipping industry faces unique challenges in achieving carbon neutrality due to the size and duration of its voyages
• The industry is exploring various alternative liquid fuels (including biofuels, ammonia, methanol),
However, according to David Fickling, achieving net-zero emissions will require considering nuclear power as a viable option 

🌎 Why does it matter for the planet: The shipping industry accounts for approximately 3% of global greenhouse gas emissions and consumes about 5% of the world's oil
• Nuclear-powered merchant ships could play a crucial role in significantly reducing emissions because only a small number of large ships are responsible for the majority of emissions.

⏭️ What's next: Nuclear power faces public image and regulatory concerns
• However, Consolidating the industry and utilizing nuclear-powered mega-ships on main routes, along with alternative-fueled feeder vessels, can align with the current industry structure and help achieve net-zero emissions

💬 One quote: David Fickling, Bloomberg Opinion columnist: "If we want the shipping trade to get all the way to net zero, nuclear may be the only way to achieve it." (David Fickling, Bloomberg Opinion columnist)

📈 One fact: The global shipping fleet has an energy consumption equivalent to that of Brazil

Click for more news covering the latest on Environmental Sustainability

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