The maritime industry is the backbone of the global economy and international trade. Today, the shipping sector produces 2-3% of global CO2 emissions. The International Maritime Organisation (IMO), the UN body that regulates the shipping industry, has set a target to cut the sector’s carbon emissions in half by 2050 compared to 2008 levels, with the aim of eliminating them altogether. The industry has been in transition for many years, focusing on lower emissions and ways to achieve decarbonisation. With IMO 2050 standards on the horizon, we all need to do more, and at pace. Decarbonisation is perhaps the greatest challenge that shipping faces, in terms of its potential to reshape fundamental elements of our industry, and the most pressing, in the face of the growing climate emergency.

At V.Group, we firmly believe that in the future, environmental credentials will become as important a consideration for vessel owners as health and safety. This is a huge shift in thinking. Vessels under V.Group management reduced carbon emissions by 4 per cent in 2021. With the new technology on the horizon, and green fuels, there is huge scope to cut this even further.

The industry has always focussed on safety and the environment. What has changed is that today, the environment has come to the fore and new environmental legislation and technology is driving new safety measures and standards.

We have a duty to play our part in shaping how the industry will look and behave in the future. We will do all we can to push for industry-wide improvements, supporting our clients and suppliers in developing as both commercially and environmentally sustainable companies.

Shipping is at a crucial turning point in building an environmentally driven future. At V.Group, we are dedicated to achieving and maintaining industry-leading performance in environmental initiatives in many areas of operation. We are proud to be embracing a variety of approaches being taken in every part of V.Group, ranging from training and development of shore based and seagoing colleagues to raise environmental awareness, to our approach to fuel, technical developments, improving product standards and understanding legislation. We are passionate about collaborating for the greater good and have bold ambitions which serve as a leading example for others to follow in making environmental progress.

Today, and increasingly in the future, we will be relied upon to lead the way towards lowering carbon emissions through adoption of pioneering and transitionary fuels, new technologies, digital practices, improving compliance and reporting standards etc. Moreover, while today command of ESG is a factor of differentiation, tomorrow it will become table stakes for commercial relevance, just as safety is today.

Matt Dunlop, Group Director of Sustainability & Decarbonisation, V.Group

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