Combining sea freight with sustainability?

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The sea freight’s contribution to protect the environment

Earth Day is an annual event celebrated on April 22. Earth Day helps raise global awareness for protecting our planet.

Sea freight is one of the sectors “called to respond” to this matter: according to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), over 70% of global trade by value are carried by sea. The sea freight is the backbone of world trade and globalization.

According to the International Maritime Organization (IMO), shipping, in total, accounts for approximately 3.1 per cent of global carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

Reducing greenhouse gas emissions is therefore fundamental. The IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) outlined a target to reduce GHG emissions by at least 50% by 2050 compared to 2008, while also making efforts to completely eliminate them.

Furthermore, starting from January 1, 2020, the International Maritime Organization (IMO) will require that all fuels used in ships contain no more than 0.5 percent sulfur.

At present, the global sulphur content cap on bunker fuel is at. 3.5%, a level considered easy to comply with for vessel operators.



This will significantly reduce the amount of sulphur oxides emanating from ships and should have major health and environmental benefits for the world, particularly for populations living close to ports and coasts.

On the other hand, the limitation of the sulfur content of bunker fuel will lead to important changes also with regard to the global fuel oil industry, both in terms of production and distribution.  It will be called upon to guarantee the availability of this product ”. (Franco Del Manso, Head of the International, Environmental and Technical Relations Department of Unione Petrolifera)


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