A techno-economic view on the zero carbon fuel landscape


The report identified fuel price is the main factor in adoption, but added that different zero-carbon fuel options will be more competitive over the decades before 2050.The report identified fuel price is the main factor in adoption, but added that different zero-carbon fuel options will be more competitive over the decades before 2050.



Lloyd’s Register and UCL’s University Maritime Advisory Services (UMAS) have published a report looking at the economic viability, technology readiness and stakeholder engagement of different zero carbon fuels. While the fuels will be technologically possible in the next few years, confidence in the availability of such fuels and the supply chain infrastructure of such fuels will need to be established to attract investment.

The report examines the three primary pillars of the adoption of zero-carbon fuels when compared with traditional fossil-based fuels; their readiness from an investment, technology and community perspective.

The investment readiness element includes fuel price scenarios, ship-specific case studies, total cost of operation, fuel related voyage costs, and cargo carrying capacity impacts.

The report provides an assessment of the technology readiness of various zero-carbon solutions, including onboard procedures for bunkering, on-board storage, processing, conversion and propulsion.

The final element considers lifecycle emissions and the evolution of the energy landscape in other sectors to provide the context of the wider energy and industrial sectors.

LR and UMAS have previously published research into zero-emission vessels (ZEVs) and potential transition pathways to decarbonisation.

Katharine Palmer, Lloyd’s Register Global Sustainability Manager, said: “This paper is the next chapter of our low carbon series, following ‘Zero-Emission Vessels: Transition Pathways’ published in January 2019. Our work with the Methanol Institute and UMAS is designed to help industry stakeholders to understand the dynamics and interactions between technology, investment and community readiness within the wider range of ship types, sizes and operational profiles. It reinforces that decarbonising of the shipping sector requires substantial and collaborative effort by maritime and energy stakeholders and beyond.”

The report is available here.



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