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FRANKFURT/DOHA: In a further environmental bid to eliminate paper, Lufthansa Cargo has announced it will now only accept digital airwaybills (eAWB) from shippers or forwarders on all routes “where feasible” beginning March 27, 2022.

The company says if local country regulations require the presentation of a paper AWB, it will print out the electronic submission to accompany the shipment.

Lufthansa is also introducing a ‘paper-to-eAWB’ service to digitize any remaining paper-based AWBs at shipment acceptance.

“With the new service, we can now easily take all customers with us on our digitization journey and enable them to take the step towards paperless transports as well," noted CCO Ashwin Bhat.

Meanwhile Qatar Aircraft Catering Company (QACC), a subsidiary of the Qatar Airways Group, has reached its own one-year sustainability target by recycling 1,000 tonnes of plastic waste and donating goods and surplus food to people in need.

During the past 12 months the company has partnered with non-profits Qatar Charity and Hifz Al Naema to distribute more than three tonnes of donated goods, including 40,000 cotton blankets, mattresses and feather duvets. It has also reduced annual waste volume by nearly 1,700 tonnes by recycling cardboard, chemical drums, plastic water bottles and wastepaper which is then remade into products sold locally or exported.

QACC says it has reduced the airline’s overall equipment and linen loading weight by nearly 257 tonnes – thereby reducing aircraft fuel consumption and subsequent CO2 emissions. The catering company is also planning a greenhouse-based farm project to achieve self-sufficiency in micro-herbs and green vegetation in Qatar.
 
 
WASHINGTON/LONDON: The World Shipping Council (WSC) has identified six zero emission pathways for the IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) to consider at its next meeting in June.

The WSC says there will be no single or simple fuel technology solution, no single party that can set the pace, nor single regulation that will ensure a successful energy transition for the global maritime industry.

“Liner shipping understands the shared responsibility for GHG reductions in the maritime sector, and we don’t underestimate the challenge,” said WSC president and CEO John Butler. “We are committed to decarbonising shipping and have multiple ideas and projects in the pipeline. But to be able make these investments, to take the necessary risks, we – and all other maritime actors – need a regulatory framework that addresses the key strategic issues.”

In a submission to the IMO, the WSC is advocating six steps on a path to zero emissions:

• A global price on carbon combined with dependable and broad-based ‘buy down’ programmes that effectively level the playing field among newer low and zero GHG ships and the tens of thousands of ships that will still be burning conventional fuels. This will play a large role in making it possible for companies to put zero GHG ships on the water and to operate them competitively.

• Transparent well-to-wake life cycle analysis of fuels, breaking out well-to-tank emissions and tank-to-wake emissions, combined with regulatory mechanisms to incentivize first- movers for use of alternative fuels that offer significant GHG reductions even if they are not available from fully renewable sources from the start.

• Integrated development of global production and supply of zero GHG fuels through partnerships between IMO member states and energy providers, as well as regulatory provisions that allow for flexibility in the initial stages of the energy transition, given that zero GHG fuels will not be available at the same time around the globe.

• A Green Corridors Programme to accelerate an equitable fuel and technology transition, introducing zero GHG ships and fuels across trade lanes where the necessary shoreside energy infrastructure is first available. This will speed development of best practices and encourage IMO member states and interested parties to focus on government-to- government initiatives and coordinated public-private investments to build the necessary production facilities and supply infrastructure.

• New build standards that support the energy transition, such as requiring ships built after a certain date to be able to operate on zero GHG fuels or not allowing the construction of vessels that can only operate on fossil fuels after a certain date.

• Applied R&D for shipboard and shoreside systems that allow the safe use of zero GHG fuels is necessary to put zero emission ships on the water. To avoid accidents and stranded assets, a significant increase in the level of R&D effort and investment is needed to develop the technologies necessary to use the most promising fuels onboard transoceanic ships.

“These are complicated matters and we do not pretend to have all the answers. What we do know is that we must develop these critical pathways together to address the climate challenge and transition the fleet to zero GHG ships,” Butler added.

In November last year the MEPC agreed to revise its Initial IMO Strategy on Reduction of GHG emissions from ships - and consider a final draft in 2023.
 

BRUSSELS: Rotterdam is the top port polluter in Europe according to a new study by campaigning NGO Transport & Environment (T&E).

Emitting nearly 13.7 million tonnes of CO2 annually, the Dutch port is on par with Europe’s fifth biggest industrial polluter - the Weisweiler coal power plant in Germany.

Antwerp and Hamburg are second and third on the list at 7.4 million and 4.7 million tonnes respectively. Spain has three ports in the top ten: Algeciras (3.5 million), Barcelona (2.8 million and Valencia (2.7 million tonnes).

The study assessed carbon emissions from ships departing and entering ports from across the supply chain, as well emissions from loading, unloading and refueling.

Notwithstanding the post-COVID shipping rebound that has seen continuing record ocean box carrier profits, between 2012 and 2019 cargo volumes at Rotterdam rose 13 percent.

“The shipping industry is making a killing right now, commented T&E Sustainable Shipping officer Jacob Armstrong. “Ports are at the heart of this and their climate impact is enormous. Yet, instead of getting behind proposals to clean up shipping, like comprehensive port electrification and mandates for green fuels, ports simply aren’t doing enough to clean up the sector.”

To address the problem T&E says European policy-makers should:

• Ensure that at least half, ideally, all inbound and outbound shipping emissions are covered by the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS).

• Require all European ports to provide shore-side electricity (SSE) to ships at berth from 2025 at all passenger terminals; from 2030 at all terminals for containerships, tankers and refrigerated-bulk carriers; and from 2035 at all remaining terminals.

• Discontinue the mandate on maritime ports to install LNG infrastructure to avoid stranded assets in fossil fuels.

• Introduce targets for the installation of hydrogen and ammonia refuelling infrastructure in ports, to enable ships to use green e-fuels. ETS revenues should also contribute to funding this infrastructure.

Currently, the European Commission (EC) has proposed 2030 as the deadline for ports to install shore-side electricity for container operators, passenger vessels and cruise lines.

However the exemptions for certain vessels depending on the number of port calls, and complete exclusion for oil tankers and bulk carriers, means the amount they will continue to emit equals the SOx emissions from 250 million fossil-fuel powered cars, says T&E.

“Ports can have a direct impact in greening our planet by providing a clean shipping infrastructure. This means installing hydrogen-based refueling infrastructure and shore-side electrification that would allow ships to turn off their engines and plug in at port,” added Armstrong.

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