A recurrent theme of February’s Riviera Offshore Support Journal Conference in London was the green agenda and investor divestment away from hydrocarbons.
The audience were polled on questions that have relevance across the maritime industry, exercising its greatest technical, regulatory, operational and commercial minds.
When asked which lower carbon fuel do you think the vast majority of OSVs will utilise, either wholly or partially, within the next five to seven years a majority (indicative of the trading profile of OSVs) opted for batteries (53%); an equal number were split between LNG and hydrogen (14%); while methanol (8%), ammonia (6%) and biofuels (4%) lagged behind.
The best way to ensure operators focus on green operations, the audience felt, is to incentivise owners and crew through bonuses in their contracts (70%), followed by owners having to pay for the fuel (16%) and charterers optimising sailing routes (14%).
Capturing the zeitgeist, delegates were also polled – on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 denoting absolute disagreement and 10 absolute agreement – on the extent to which they believed anti oil sentiment will impact the market in the year ahead; 48% of those in attendance put the likelihood at 8, 9 or 10.
What is to be done? How can the shipowner reconcile short-term cyclical patterns and pressures with the need to meet public environmental concerns? And how can the owner be incentivised to invest in fuel-efficient technologies and future fuels?
Part of the answer lies in enhanced industry collaboration; a concept given plenty of lip-service over the years but now finding solid expression in two separate, but similar and equally worthwhile initiatives. Both are deserving of the widest industry support.
MAN Energy Solution’s newly launched mýa, is an open initiative for digital data integration and collaboration. MAN’s goal is to create an independent, non-profit organisation to govern mýa and promote industry collaboration in realising the benefits of digital technology.
“The need for data integration between OEMs, operators and asset owners is rising,” MAN Energy Solutions head of digital Per Hansson said at the launch. “Vessel operators work with many OEMs and their respective platforms and are often faced with a complicated and uncoordinated view of the various equipment that they operate and maintain. With the launch of mýa, we want to reduce complexity for our customers and for other OEMs alike and to lower the hurdles for getting payback from data.”