Shipping faces a major challenge from the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to reduce its Greenhouse Gas emissions by at least 50% by 2050, a target that it is widely acknowledged cannot be reached without the introduction of new technologies, propulsion systems and fuels.
The new centre located in Singapore will be ABS’ (Sea Asia stand B2 – E01) flagship for its sustainability activities worldwide.
“Decarbonizing shipping is a challenge that will compel the industry to reach new technology frontiers. At the same time, it is an opportunity to transition to a more sustainable world economy enabled by efficient, low-carbon transportation,” said ABS chairman, president and ceo Christopher J. Wiernicki.
“To facilitate the journey toward decarbonization targets, ABS established its Global Sustainability Center to coordinate initiatives that advance innovation and technology development focused on safety, practicality and the commercial viability of proposed solutions.”
The centre will be headed by Gurinder Singh, ABS global director sustainability, backed by an experienced team of professionals and the worldwide organisation of ABS.
The centre will bring together various sustainability projects from the classification society. These include – studying the viability of new energy sources and fuel for shipping, the use of digital technology to increase efficiency and simplify transactions, certifying and validating new technologies, and analysing decarbonisation pathways.
Singh commented: “Today’s world is quickly changing, and the shipping industry is navigating a complex regulatory landscape and rapid technology changes. The IMO Green House Gas reduction targets will present an unprecedented challenge to the industry—as the targets cannot be achieved with today’s technology. The Center has a vital role to play in helping the industry manage the transition safely.”
With the scale of the task that faces shipping, the new ABS Global Sustainability Center plans to work collaboratively with other institutions in the same field in Singapore.
“Singapore is an ideal location for the Center as we build upon our strong collaboration with leading Universities and Sustainability Centers of Excellence here. The Center is a home for innovation and creativity that brings together industry and academia working hand-in-hand toward a sustainable future,” Singh added.
The centre will also hold an industry education programme, seminars and lectures, designed to raise awareness of maritime sustainability technologies.