background image

The UN just set a net-zero goal for shipping. Here’s how that could work

author image

By illuminem briefings 🌎

· 2 min read


illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece here in MIT Technology Review or enjoy below

🗞️ Driving the news: On July 7, the International Maritime Organization (IMO), a UN group, set a net-zero greenhouse-gas emissions target for global shipping by or around 2050
• Emissions should be at least 20% below 2008 levels by 2030 and at least 70% lower by 2040
The deal also says that low-emission energy sources should make up at least 5% of energy used in shipping by 2030

🔭 The context: With the shipping industry accounting for approximately 3% of the world’s total emissions, this decision marks a significant shift for an industry deemed difficult to decarbonize 
• While some view these targets as challenging, experts believe the sector could attain these objectives by slowing down ships and exploring alternative emission-reducing technologies and fuels

🌎 Why does it matter for the planet: The reduction of emissions in the shipping industry is crucial to global climate change mitigation efforts
• The longer-term milestones could prove harder to achieve and may necessitate the use of low- and zero-emissions fuels like green hydrogen, methanol, and ammonia

⏭️ What's next: The IMO plans to enforce new measures, such as a gradual reduction of allowable emissions from fuels and some form of economic measures that could price greenhouse-gas emissions
• However, resistance from several nations to these proposals could make negotiations challenging

💬 One quote: "I don’t think it’s necessarily technically difficult to clean up or decarbonize the sector—just more politically challenging." (Bryan Comer, Head of the Maritime Program at International Council on Clean Transportation) 

📈 One stat: By combining slower speeds, wind assistance, and low-emissions fuels, the shipping industry could cut emissions nearly 50% by the end of the decade, according to a study by CE Delft

Click for more news covering the latest on Net Zero

Did you enjoy this illuminem voice? Support us by sharing this article!
author photo

About the author

illuminem's editorial team - providing you with concise summaries of the most important sustainability news of the day.

Follow us on Linkedin, Twitter​ & Instagram

Other illuminem Voices


Related Posts


You cannot miss it!

Weekly. Free. Your Top 10 Sustainability & Energy Posts.

You can unsubscribe at any time (read our privacy policy)