Amazon, Unilever and IKEA Support Zero Emissions Shipping Initiative

Nine large multinationals have become the first companies to sign a new declaration of ambition 2040 and to commit to converting their sea freight vessels to zero carbon fuels by 2040, the Cargo Owners for Zero Emission Vessels (coZEV ).

CoZEV is a coalition of cargo owners, initiated by the non-profit program of the Aspen Institute Energy and Environment, which brings together cargo owners and marine operators to work to accelerate the decarbonization of the shipping industry and achieve zero net corporate emissions. supply chain commitments.

This week, Amazon, Brooks Running, Frog Bikes, IKEA, Inditex, Michelin, Patagonia, Tchibo and Unilever became the first to sign the 2040 ambition statement, sending a message to bunker fuel producers and the bunker industry. shipping freight customers want to see zero-carbon shipping services provided.

In the declaration, carbon-free fuels are defined as fuels that release no or very little greenhouse gases during their life cycle, including no emissions at the production stage. As such, fossil gas or liquefied natural gas (LNG) will not be considered a zero carbon fuel.

“The coZEV initiative represents a historic step in the fight against climate change, with its bold ambition to harness the climate leadership of companies to accelerate the decarbonization of the global shipping industry,” said Ingrid Irigoyen, Director of the Aspen Institute Shipping Decarbonization Initiative, which facilitates the coZEV effort.

“Shipping has long been a major producer of climate and air pollution, and attempts to move away from fossil fuels have encountered significant hurdles, including a perceived lack of demand from freight customers which has stifled investment and scalability of potential solutions. target today, a group of leaders are changing the conversation.

“And that’s just the start. We expect this movement among climate-leading companies to grow rapidly. This will allow us to generate economies of scale, innovation and a boost of confidence. among investors and value chain actors that there is a business opportunity in doing the right thing. “

Shipping is responsible for 3% of global emissions and, according to coZEV, the industry must switch to carbon-free fuels by the mid-2020s, use them on a large scale by 2030, and be fully carbon-free. by 2050 at the latest to decarbonise in line with the global goal of limiting temperature increases to 1.5 degrees Celsius.

The signatories of the Declaration of Ambition 2040 also call on policymakers and governments around the world to advance the decarbonization of national, regional and international maritime transport.

Michelle Grose, Logistics Manager at Unilever, welcomed the new statement. “The next few years offer exciting and important opportunities to harness technology and innovation in the shipping industry, and there really is no time to waste,” she said. “By working with the Aspen Institute and collaborating with other major ocean freight users as part of the coZEV network, we look forward to accelerating the decarbonization of the shipping industry and working on our shared commitment to the zero emission maritime transport. “

His comments were echoed by Edgar Blanco, director of Net-Zero Carbon at Amazon, who said: “It’s time to act, and we invite other companies of freight owners who want to take the lead in the fight against climate change to join us in collaboration. “

The Aspen Shipping Decarbonization Initiative team said in a blog post that action is needed now to ensure the 2040 target is met. “2040 may seem far away, but experts in this hard-to-master industry know that vast new zero-carbon fuel supply chains need to be built and that many players need to come together to launch the first large-scale projects – financiers to fuel producers, ports, to individual shipowners, to carriers and, of course, to their customers, the shipowners whose activities underpin the entire company, ”said the group. “They also know the need for political support, regulatory reforms, new fuel standards, updated procedures and protocols needed to scale zero carbon solutions.”

The team also announced that it is developing a series of projects to help companies transition to zero-carbon shipping, including promoting new tools for tracking shipping emissions data and working with cargo owners. to support public policies aimed at reducing the cost of decarbonization.