With the arrival of 2020 and the global sulphur cap, much has changed in the marine industry – and is still changing. When it comes to fuel sulphur limits, exhaust gas cleaning and scrubber technology, it can be difficult to sort out the facts and to understand what they really mean. In her blog, The Emissions Compliance Corner, Kate Schrøder Jensen is working to change that
As Alfa Laval’s specialist in emissions regulations, Ms Jensen is in a unique position to offer insights. In the course of her work, she follows the development and implementation of marine emissions regulations, serving as Alfa Laval’s liaison with MARPOL. That places her where decisions are being made, for example at IMO’s MEPC meetings. Moreover, it puts her in contact with some of the authorities that interpret them, such as ports and class societies.
Ms Jensen, who has a degree in thermal energy from Aalborg University and has also worked with alternative fuels, has supported the Alfa Laval PureSOx scrubber team since 2010. In her interactions with regulatory officials, she is thus at an important crossroads between policy and technological feasibility. “The legislation has to reflect what’s actually possible, which is why engineers need to be involved in the process,” she says. “The legislators actually need the opinions of suppliers, in order to be sure that the demands are technically achievable. My job is a sort of lookout post, where I help make sure that things can move ahead smoothly.”
In other words, Ms Jensen is actively involved in reviewing and discussing the guidelines that affect scrubbers and set the framework for exhaust gas cleaning. However, she is clear that she does not make policy itself. “Alfa Laval is very strict about not interfering with political decisions,” she says. “My job and my arguments are solely on a technology-based level, where they are always grounded in hard evidence.”
The same is true for Ms Jensen’s statements in the blog, where she closely follows the discussion in the marine industry. “I hear a lot of rumours and confusion about fuel sulphur limits, exhaust gas cleaning, scrubber technology and more,” she says. “I really want to clear up the common misconceptions, so that marine customers can have a clear view of the compliance rules – and the technical and financial considerations associated with them.”
In the blog, Ms Jensen also takes time to look forward, exploring where emissions regulations and compliance solutions may be headed. “I don’t have a crystal ball that can see into the future,” she says. “But what I do have is a good amount of insight, which comes from talking so frequently to the rule makers and working so closely with scrubber engineers and experts. I cannot say with certainty what will happen, but I can point out what may be on the horizon.”