Decarbonising ocean transport

Most of our emissions derive from fossil fuel-powered ocean transport services. Focusing our decarbonisation investments to drive the transition to sustainable fuels is central to our decarbonisation strategy.

Why future fuels matter

For more than a century, shipping has relied on just one type of fuel: oil. Today, we see the emergence of a patchwork of new greener fuel options, and we are spreading our investments across several alternatives to ensure we make an impact already in this decade.

Transitional fuels like natural gas may also become a viable option to reach net-zero. But in light of the climate emergency, and our customers’ need to deliver on their own carbon targets, we have decided to leapfrog to pure net zero fuels that are available right now.

Why future fuels matter

Our ambition

We will deliver an emergency response to the climate crisis and take leadership in decarbonising global supply chains.

Climate change

Priorities and actions

Based on our pathway analysis of viable future fuels for net zero ocean shipping, we are prioritising the exploration of three alternative fuel types.

Biodiesels

Derived from waste feedstocks, biofuels have significant impact potential. They can be used as drop-in fuel in existing vessels and are already powering our fleet. We sell biofuels under the Maersk ECO Delivery label.

Uptake of biofuel solutions may be limited by the availability of suitable biomass feedstock and pressure from competing demand from road and aviation.

Green methanol

Bio-methanol and e-methanol, including lignin enhanced fuels, can be produced from sustainable biomass and renewable electricity. They have well-known handling and are powering vessels today.

We are prioritising green methanol solutions as we believe they will enable us to have a greater impact on the sustainability of global supply chains in this decade.

Green ammonia

E-ammonia can be produced at scale from renewable electricity and contains zero carbon. It does, however, present safety and toxicity challenges, as well as challenges at ports.

Uptake of green ammonia will be dependent on the future cost of renewable energy and engine availability (scheduled for 2025).

2021

Investment in 13 green methanol enabled vessels

2023

World's first container ship in operation on green methanol

2024-2025

Twelve 16,000 TEU methanol enabled vessels in operation

Breaking the demand deadlock for new fuels

When it comes to green fuel adoption, our industry faces a “chicken or egg?” dilemma. Fuel producers wait for sufficient demand before investing to scale production. Shipping companies wait to order new vessels until cost-competitive fuel is available at scale.

To break this deadlock, we have ordered 13 new vessels that will be powered by green methanol – of which there is currently insufficient supply. By stimulating the market in this way, we hope to send a signal to fuel producers that they can safely invest in scaling solutions to ensure a steady supply of future green fuels.

Accelerate your business to net zero

We are working closely with a broad range of customers to further develop our green fuel offerings. Maersk ECO Delivery substitutes fossil fuels with low-carbon alternatives and harnesses our new technologies and vessels to provide an easier choice for customers looking to ship their cargo more sustainably.

Explore green logistics solutions from Maersk.

Decarbonisation terminology

Maersk emissions dashboard

Whether you are looking for improved visibility over ocean freight emissions data, or enhanced emissions reporting and optimisation across your logistics set up, the Maersk Emissions Dashboard is a single point solution for keeping your emissions targets in sight.

Emissions dashboard

Maersk Sustainability Report 2021

Read more about our progress on environmental, social and governance dimensions in our latest Sustainability Report.
Maersk sustainability report

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