Page 22 - European Energy Innovation - Spring 2017 publication
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22  Spring 2017 European Energy Innovation


Shipping in Changing Climates

A multi-university and cross-industry consortium looking at the future of shipping in a carbon
constrained world.
By Dr Nishatabbas Rehmatulla, Research Associate, UCL Energy Institute (pictured)

                                            of current global CO2 emissions,            intensity will be required. Translating
                                            without further action this share is        this at the ship level, the aggregate
                                            likely to rise in the future due to rising  average operational CO2 intensity for
                                            demand and emissions reductions             all ship sizes of containerships, tankers
                                            from other sectors. Shipping faces          and drybulk (which account for 60%
                                            unique set of challenges in the coming      of emissions from shipping) requires a
                                            decades due to a number of interacting      reduction of 80-90% on 2012 levels by
                                            factors, such as climate change (sea        2050 in the 2°C scenario and net zero
                                            level rise, storm frequency); regulatory    emissions in the 1.5°C scenario.
                                            change (mitigation and adaptation
                                            policy); and macroeconomic                  A HOLISTIC APPROACH
                                            environment (increased global trade,        In light of the challenge, five UK
                                            and changing trade patterns).               universities joined hands with leading
                                                                                        industry organisations to provide a
Shipping carries around 80%                 From the climate change perspective,        holistic analysis and understanding on
            of the volume of international  the challenge for shipping is to            the subject of the shipping system, its
            trade and although the          bridge the emissions gap between            energy efficiency and emissions, and
            high efficiency of deep-sea     the business as usual scenarios to a        its transition to a low carbon, more
shipping leads to it contributing 2-3%      level consistent with limiting global       resilient future. The £4m Shipping in
                                            mean temperatures to 1.5°C or 2°C.          Changing Climates (SCC) uses a whole
                                            Figure 1 shows the gap between the          systems approach to understand the
                                            blue fan of BAU scenarios forecast          scope for greater energy efficiency
                                            in the Third International Maritime         of the supply side, understand the
                                            Organization (IMO) greenhouse gas           demand side drivers and to understand
                                            (GHG) study 2014, and the 2°C and           the supply and demand interactions
                                            1.5°C pathway. If shipping is required      and potential future evolution in
                                            to maintain its current share (2-3%)        shipping. In recognition of the
                                            of global CO2 emissions out to 2050,        challenge of managing and delivering
                                            steep supply side reductions in CO2         outcomes in a multi-university, multi-
                                                                                        disciplinary systems research, the SCC
Figure 1: Shipping emissions trajectories under various scenarios                       project is organised into three themes.

                                                                                        Theme 1 investigates the
                                                                                        interconnection of ship design
                                                                                        and performance analysis with
                                                                                        environmental conditions and
                                                                                        operational strategy validated using
                                                                                        real-world operator data to propose
                                                                                        improvements to existing vessels and
                                                                                        step-change solutions for future. The
                                                                                        Ship Impact Model (SIM) models the
                                                                                        design and operational performance
                                                                                        of all the components of the ship
                                                                                        together, which allows for the ship
                                                                                        performance (such as cargo capacity,
                                                                                        fuel consumption and emissions)
                                                                                        for many different design options
                                                                                        to be assessed and compared. Key
                                                                                        technologies for both potential new-

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