For a long time, the shipping industry has been a significant contributor to global warming and climate change. Ocean-going ships contribute about 3 percent of the global carbon dioxide emissions. This trend is, however, gradually changing, by shipping companies and manufacturers focusing on building better ships and enhancing operations to make the shipping industry become greener. Here are the various strategies that have been put in place to make shipping more eco-friendly.
Investment in Exhaust Scrubbers
A large portion of the toxic emissions from ships is emitted through exhaust gases. As a primary measure, ships are being built with exhaust scrubbers designed to capture sulfur and other fine particulate emissions that commonly pollute the environment. The scrubber technology will prove a game-changer in helping control sulfur emissions globally.
Use of Hydrogen Fuel
Diesel-powered ships are gradually being replaced by new versions of ships powered by hydrogen fuel. Although this concept is still under test, the idea is to use more hydrogen fuel and less of long-chain hydrocarbon fuels which are commonly associated with toxic gas emissions. The hydrogen fuel system is highly cost-efficient and does not produce any toxic emissions.
Use of Liquefied Natural Gas
Tests have shown that liquefied nitrogen fuel is the undoubted future of the shipping industry when it comes to the reduction of air pollution. LNG, once combined with long-chain hydrocarbon fuels, such as diesel, helps boost efficiency in engine performance. It also contributes to the overall saving of fuel, thereby making ships to become operationally efficient and less contributors to pollution.
Use of Underbelly Bubbles
To become more eco-friendly, the idea of increasing the aerodynamics of ships is also receiving increasing attention. Researchers have discovered that introducing fine bubbles on the underbelly of a ship can help reduce friction. The tiny bubbles act as lubricants, thereby enabling the vessel to cruise at higher speeds and consume lesser fuel. Tests have revealed that this concept can reduce fuel consumption by up to 5 percent.
Recovery and Recycling of Waste Heat
The heat produced by a running ship engine can also be utilized to power up other functions that are necessary for the comfort of the sailors. The idea of recycling the heat and using it to heat the sailors living quarters generally helps reduce the ships’ energy consumption by up to 14 percent.