Study: Reducing container ship emissions with just-in-time arrivals

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(Courtesy IMO)

Container ships can reduce fuel burn and resulting carbon dioxide emissions by 14% per trip using just-in-time arrival, according to a new study commissioned by the Global Shipping Industry Alliance. ‘IMO-Norway GreenVoyage2050 to support Low Carbon Shipping (Low Carbon GIA).

Just-in-time (JIT) arrivals allow vessels to optimize their speed during their voyage to arrive in port when berth, channel and nautical services are available. Container ships can reduce fuel burn and resulting carbon dioxide emissions by 14% per trip using just-in-time arrival, according to a new study commissioned by the Global Shipping Industry Alliance. ‘IMO-Norway GreenVoyage2050 to support Low Carbon Shipping (Low Carbon GIA).

The JIT is an important tool that can help ensure that a vessel achieves its required Carbon Intensity Indicator (CII) and associated CII rating in accordance with the IMO’s short-term GHG reduction measure, which will enter effective later this year. The JIT can be taken up, along with other operational measures, in the enhanced Ship Energy Efficiency Management Plan (SEEMP) which will play a central role in the implementation of recent IMO energy efficiency measures. .

This latest study, undertaken by MarineTraffic and Energy and Environmental Research Associates (EERA), explores the global implementation of JIT in the container industry. Using AIS data from calendar year 2019 (pre-pandemic), the impact of JIT on fuel consumption and emissions was assessed by optimizing all routes under three scenarios:

  1. During the whole trip,
  2. In the last 24 hours, and
  3. In the last 12 hours.

The results show that while optimizing speed across the duration of a trip offers the greatest opportunity for savings (showing an average fuel saving per trip of 14.16%), there were benefits across all scenarios with savings of 5.90% (24-hour scenario) and 4.23% (12-hour scenario), respectively. This indicates that implementing JIT in the last 12 hours of a trip can already contribute significantly to fuel and emissions savings.

“In the fight against climate change, global shipping has a steep mountain to climb, and we must pull all the levers to meet the Paris Agreement. The study highlights that, as we strive to accelerate and to expand the availability of future green fuels, significant near-term emission reductions can be achieved by bringing together ships, terminals and ports to exchange standardized data and facilitate just-in-time arrivals,” said Captain Andreas M. van der Wurff, Head of Port Optimization at AP Moller-Maersk and Chairman of the Low Carbon GIA Ship-Port Interface Working Group.

The Low Carbon GIA is a public-private partnership aimed at developing innovative solutions to overcome common barriers to decarbonizing the shipping sector. He has actively explored the concept of JIT through various research projects and several industry stakeholder roundtables. In 2020, it published the Guide to Just In Time Arrivals – Potential Obstacles and Solutions, providing guidance to stakeholders for implementing JIT arrivals.

The low-carbon GIA was established in 2017 under the GEF-UNDP-IMO GloMEEP project and now continues to operate under the IMO-Norway GreenVoyage2050 project.

Sea News, June 7

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