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Act today to reduce emissions ahead of new fuels says Shell

Photo: Shell Karrie Trauth, Senior Vice President, Head of Shipping and Maritime for Shell
Karrie Trauth, Senior Vice President, Head of Shipping and Maritime for Shell
The shipping and maritime arm of Shell believes energy efficiency solutions that can be deployed now are a key part of decarbonisation efforts and should be a priority for the industry as whole.

“It will take time for zero and near zero emission fuels for shipping to be scaled up and become commercially viable. But we must not let this delay the actions we can take today,” Karrie Trauth, Senior Vice President, Head of Shipping and Maritime for Shell, told the Singapore Shipping Forum.

She said the industry must transition using viable solutions available today that fall broadly into energy efficiency and low carbon fuels.

When it comes to energy efficiency operating data from the vessel is key. Making vessels more energy efficient not only reduces emissions today and helps the company’s vessels stay in near term compliance, but also will remain important once new fuels become available.

“At Shell we firmly believe that energy efficient technologies are an essential driver of our decarbonisation efforts, and they should be a priority for the entire industry today,” she stated at the forum organised by Moore Stephens and BNP Paribas as part of Singapore Maritime Week.

Shell believes major untapped potential remains to reduce fuel bills and emissions which will be of both environmental and commercial value for when new fuels become available which will have less energy density and be more expensive.

“So, using less today sets us up on a good pathway,” Trauth.

The company is exploring a range of energy saving technologies including trim optimisation through its Just Add Water System (JAWS), air lubrication, shaft generators, wind propulsion, and just in time arrival.

“All of these things are available to us today. To reduce our fuel burn, which reduces our CO2 footprint,” she said.

The other part of the equation is exploring the use of lower carbon fuels. “The focus is and should be on pure flexibility and vessels that can use scalable solutions on the pathway of net zero,” Trauth stated.

These are fuels such LNG, biofuels, and biodiesel, all of which are scalable and available today and can help on the journey to zero emissons.

“To support this, the global orderbook needs to be increasingly dominated by dual fuel vessels. And we welcome the shift that we're seeing with the order book, now for alternative fuel vessels now representing over 40% of shipbuilding,” she said. The optionality of dual fuel vessels helps reduce the risk of stranded assets in future.

For shortsea shipping Shell sees electrification and hybrid solutions offering an effective route to net zero shipping. Last year Shell launched Singapore’s first fully electric ferries in collaboration with Penguin International.

Shell is one of the world's largest charterers with over 1,000 vessels on the water on any given day and is a ship manager of LNG, crude and product tankers.