Shipping emissions forecast to flatten out next year

Date: Tuesday, October 18, 2022
Source: Splash 24/7

Shipping is forecast to flatten overall emissions output next year after a post-covid growth of its carbon footprint.

Clarksons Research has released an update on the industry’s green progress with plenty of startling data for the industry to absorb ahead of a raft of new regulations coming maritime’s way.

Clarksons is projecting emissions to remain steady next year as the impact of speed and a growing eco fleet balance any trade and fleet activity growth.

With the International Maritime Organization’s Carbon Intensity Indicator (CII) due to start from January, Clarksons’ theoretical CII rating estimates suggest around a third of vessels will be D or E rated if current operational behaviour continues, rising towards 50% if they are still trading in 2026 and have not modified speed or specification.

Although shipping’s huge fleet renewal program is in its infancy, Clarksons is already seeing tiered markets develop. By end 2023, Clarksons projects that 30% of the fleet tonnage will be modern eco, 24% will be scrubber fitted, 6% will be alternative fuelled and 25% will have an energy saving technology (EST).

“Besides emissions, we expect a record fuel bill for shipping in 2022 to increase focus / premiums for fuel efficient tonnage,” Clarksons noted in its green update, observing that the scrubber retrofitting peak has passed with just 20 ships being retrofitted now per month, down from 200 in 2020.

“It is unlikely that the unprecedented fleet renewal needed to decarbonise will progress evenly. Propulsion technology uncertainty and associated residual value risk concerns are contributing to a relatively short orderbook (still ~10% of fleet) and expectations of relatively low fleet growth in the medium-term,” Clarksons projected.

Looking at fleet renewal and shipbuilding output Clarksons suggests total newbuild orders will increase from $64bn in the 2016-2020 period to $139bn a year from 2021 to 2030.

Clarksons is projecting $1.4trn of newbuild orders are needed for fleet renewal between 2021 and 2030 and $4.2trn through 2050, warning this week that financing fleet renewal and shoreside infrastructure may become a long-term challenge without new sources or green credentials established.

The average age of the world fleet is increasing, standing at 12.2 years on a gt weighted basis, up from a low of 9.7 years in 2013. For the bulk carrier fleet, the average age is 11.5 years, for tankers it is 12.1 years and for the container fleet it is 14.2 years. Today, 28.1% of global tonnage is aged over 15 years.

Alternative fuels, led massively by LNG, make up 4.5% of the extant fleet in gt terms and 44% of the orderbook, according to Clarksons data.

Ports globally with LNG bunkering have increased from around 60 to 150 in the past five years and may reach 250 by 2026, Clarksons projects, adding that huge investment at ports is needed with only 171 ports out of approximately 6,000 having shore side power.


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