It’s Possible That The World Will Soon See The First Cargo Ship With Nearly Zero Carbon Dioxide Emissions

One of the companies spearheading the project claims that the world’s first cargo ship that emits almost no pollution that warms the planet is scheduled to launch in 2026.

The yet-to-be-built Yara Eyde will primarily run on clean ammonia, according to fertilizer manufacturer Yara International and its partners. This means that it will emit 95% less carbon dioxide (CO2) than the typical fossil fuel-powered vessel, the Norwegian company told CNN.

The company’s president and CEO, Svein Tore Holsether, hopes that the ship will demonstrate “what is possible” for the shipping sector as it moves towards decarbonization.

It’s time to stop talking in vague terms about what we’ll do in 2040 and 2050 and start making effective use of the technologies that are currently available. and demonstrate its efficacy,” he told CNN.

The International Maritime Organisation estimates that nearly 3% of the world’s yearly emissions of greenhouse gases, including CO2, come from shipping.

One of the largest fertiliser manufacturers in the world, Yara International, has teamed up with its subsidiary Yara Clean Ammonia and Norway’s North Sea Container Line to work on the ship. The ship will carry cargo between Germany and Norway.

Germany and norway

Reducing emissions

Ammonia production usually uses a lot of fossil fuels, like natural gas and coal, and produces a lot of CO2 emissions.

According to the International Energy Agency, the process emits almost twice as much CO2 per metric tonne (1.1 short tonne) of ammonia as the production of crude steel and four times when compared to cement.

But for the Yara Eyde, Yara Clean Ammonia intends to supply a blend of “blue” and “green” ammonia. While “green” ammonia is produced using renewable energy, “blue” ammonia is produced by trapping CO2 emissions at the source and storing them underground.

Five percent of the ship’s energy requirements will come from biodiesel, which is required to start the engine before it switches to burning ammonia, a Yara International representative told CNN.

According to the spokesperson, the biodiesel will be carbon neutral because the amount of CO2 absorbed during production will equal the amount of CO2 released during fuel combustion.

It has been discovered by researchers that certain biofuels, such as biodiesel, are not always carbon-neutral. CO2 may be released during the processes that go into making biofuels, such as applying fertilizers to grow the plants that some are made of.

There are additional disclaimers. As a result, it is currently unknown who will construct the Yara Eyde, making it impossible to estimate the amount of CO2 that will be released during construction.

There have been prior attempts to improve shipping. One of the largest shipping companies in the world, Maersk, stated in 2021 that it would purchase multiple carbon-neutral cargo ships powered by sustainable bio- or e-methanol. The company declared in August of last year that by the first quarter of 2024, it would launch the first carbon-neutral vessel.

Additionally, the shipping sector committed in July to achieving net zero emissions “by or around” 2050, which would entail eliminating at least as much pollution from the atmosphere as it produces. However, in light of the rapidly worsening climate crisis, some climate experts criticised the commitment as being woefully inadequate.