News Digest – 07 Aug 2021

Following Stories in this News Digest: * Singapore Seeks to Build Electric Vessel Supply Chain for Harbor * Shipping Urged to Review LNG Use as Methane’s Role in Climate Change is Revealed * Digital training proposed to help plug seafarer shortage * World’s First CO2 Capture Plant Installed on Japanese Bulker * Carnival Cruise Line’s First LNG-Fueled Ship Departs on Maiden Voyage * India’s New Aircraft Carrier INS Vikrant Starts Sea Trials * Allianz warns on crew change crisis and ship safety * Ultra-Thin Solar Panels Deployed on Hatch Covers for Inland Shipping * Pollution mapping app goes live * New ITF web tool helps seafarers steer clear of shady manning agents * India takes over UNSC presidency for August; maritime security, counter-terrorism key priorities
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07 Aug: Singapore Seeks to Build Electric Vessel Supply Chain for Harbor

A coalition of companies, research institutes, public authorities, and a classification society plan to work together to develop Singapore’s first comprehensive electric vessel supply chain, which they believe can become a model for decarbonizing harbor operations. The effort, which will be led by Keppel Offshore & Marine seeks to launch the electric supply chain by 2025. Studies indicate with approximately 1,600 diesel-powered harbor crafts operating in the Port of Singapore electrification can have a significant impact on carbon emission.

The scope of the project includes developing a cost-competitive electric-powered harbor craft, nearshore charging infrastructure, as well as upskilling and developing core talent in marine operations. In the first phase, the coalition will conduct research and feasibility studies as well as pursue the design and development of an electric vessel and charging infrastructure. The project will include retrofitting harbor crafts and installing the charging stations. The partners will then conduct trials and seek to scale up the project.

Fincantieri to Study Use of Green Hydrogen in Ports and Shipping

Shipping Urged to Review LNG Use as Methane’s Role in Climate Change is Revealed

Keppel O&M’s Floating Living Lab will be used to test bed the electric vessel charging infrastructure, accelerating the piloting and commercialization of the project cost-effectively.

The partners believe that developing a comprehensive electric vessel supply chain in Singapore will also foster growth in the local SME technology and supply chain ecosystem. Chris Ong, CEO of Keppel O&M also noted that the same electrification solutions can potentially be applied in other segments of the offshore and marine industry and possibly other sectors as well. Reference


07 Aug: Shipping Urged to Review LNG Use as Methane’s Role in Climate Change is Revealed

By Nick Savvides (The Loadstar) –
Members of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a body of scientists and others from 195 countries, will launch the first of four reports on Monday, which is expected to highlight the growing influence of methane in the warming of the atmosphere.

Methane is a key component of liquefied natural gas (LNG), the supposedly cleaner and more efficient transition fuel many in the shipping industry believe will provide a stepping-stone to zero-emission transport.

It is also being used increasingly as a replacement for land-based power generation as well as for powering large ships.

CMA CGM has ordered 14 LNG-powered vessels, some of which have already been delivered, and Matson, the US Jones Act operator, has also ordered similar ships. While The Loadstar reported in May that MSC agreed a long-term charter deal with Eastern Pacific Shipping for eleven 15,300 teu LNG dual-fuelled newbuild vessels.

In total there are more than 130 LNG-powered vessels under construction, including more than 40 containerships, according to the shipbroker Gibsons.

CMA CGM’s ships operate on a low-pressure engine design that is more prone to methane slip – where not all the LNG is burnt in the cylinder and methane is released into the atmosphere through the exhaust gases. High-pressure engines suffer less methane slip, but are far more expensive to fit.

Some scientists believe the take up of cleaner high-pressure LNG power plants will not be as great as cheaper low-pressure version, which could cause greater damage to the climate than the carbon emissions the LNG replaces – methane is more than 80 times more potent as a greenhouse gas than carbon.

Meanwhile, other shipowners are contemplating orders for LNG-powered vessels, with advice from organisations such as class society DNV that say LNG can allow carriers to meet the 2030 International Maritime Organization’s 30% reduction in greenhouse gas target.

However, with scientists now concerned about the possible collapse of the Gulf Stream, a key global current that maintains air and sea convection stabilising the global climate, a rethink may well be necessary. Reference


06 Aug: Digital training proposed to help plug seafarer shortage

Ship managers and operators facing a potential seafarer shortage because of Covid-19 can increase their talent pipeline by outsourcing digital maritime training to a specialist says Nigel Cleave, Senior Advisor at OneLearn Global.

Ship managers and operators facing a potential seafarer shortage because of Covid-19 can increase their talent pipeline by outsourcing digital maritime training to a specialist. Nigel Cleave, Senior Advisor at OneLearn Global, the digital eLearning maritime training provider, said his company was available to help shipping companies train existing and develop new mariners amid the crew change crisis.

The shipping industry has been rocked by several challenges in recent years, not least the global pandemic,” he said following the release of the ‘Alllianz Safety and Shipping Review 2021’, which warns of long-term consequences for the maritime sector. “Sourcing skilled seafarers is difficult right now and it could get harder as new generations entering the profession are struggling to get on-the-job experience because they can’t board ships. That is all down to Covid-19.

Investing in maritime training is vital to the industry’s future prosperity, according to Allianz’s 2021 shipping review. Captain Andrew Kinsey, Senior Marine Risk Consultant at Allianz Global Corporate & Speciality, said that with hundreds of thousands of crew members stuck on vessels or working extended contracts, he had “serious concerns” for the next generation of seafarers. “The situation with Covid-19 means that we are not training and developing them [seafarers], while the sector may struggle to attract new blood due to current working conditions.” Reference


06 Aug: World’s First CO2 Capture Plant Installed on Japanese Bulker

A Japanese project to test carbon capture on ships has successfully completed the world’s first installation of an operational CO2 capture plant aboard an ocean going vessel and is moving into the commissioning and testing phase. The project is being led by Japan’s Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha (“K” Line) working with Mitsubishi Shipbuilding that installed the unit and Nippon Kaiji Kyokai (ClassNK) and seeks to conduct the first at sea tests to validate the operations of the small-sized CO2 capture plant.

The installation is part of a two-year project launched by “K” Lines and its partners in August 2020. The project is being conducted with support from the Maritime Bureau of Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT), and involves converting the design of an existing CO2 capture system for onshore power plants to a marine environment.

Mitsubishi Shipbuilding retrofitted the demonstration unit aboard a five-year-old bulk carrier, the Corona Unity, operated by “K” Line for Tohoku Electric Power Co. The 88,715 dwt vessel, which is employed transporting coal, departed Yokohama, Japan at the beginning of the week for Newcastle, Australia.

In announcing the project in 2020, “K” Line said, “As the world’s first marine demonstration test, the project will provide invaluable insights into facilities design and technologies for capture CO2 emissions.” Reference


06 Aug: Carnival Cruise Line’s First LNG-Fueled Ship Departs on Maiden Voyage

Carnival Cruise Line’s brand new mega-ship left Port Canaveral, Florida, on Saturday, reintroducing cruise ship revenue expeditions to the port city following a lengthy COVID-19 break.

Carnival President Christine Duffy attended a ribbon-cutting ceremony themed “Back to Fun” to welcome guests aboard the brand new vessel. “MARDI GRAS has been five years in the making, and we’ve been looking forward to finally welcoming guests aboard to enjoy this one-of-a-kind ship for a very long time,” Duffy said. “It’s extremely satisfying to be able to contribute to the local community by creating much-needed jobs and stimulating the economy.”

MARDI GRAS is a powerhouse ship that houses 5,200 passengers and features all of the accommodations that one would expect from a family-friendly Carnival ship, such as a waterpark as well as the world’s first at-sea rollercoaster.

The ship is the first LNG-fueled ship under the Carnival Cruise Line name, and it incorporates design aspects of seven existing Carnival Corporation LNG ships, including the AIDANOVA and COSTA SMERALDA. Carnival Celebration, another of such sister ships, will be stationed in Port Miami following its handover next year. Reference


05 Aug: India’s New Aircraft Carrier INS Vikrant Starts Sea Trials

Indigenous Aircraft Carrier (IAC) ‘Vikrant’ designed by Indian Navy’s Directorate of Naval Design(DND) is being built at Cochin Shipyard Limited(CSL), a Public Sector Shipyard under Ministry of Shipping(MoS). IAC is a leading example of the nation’s quest for “Atma Nirbhar Bharat” with more than 76% indigenous content. This is the maiden attempt of the Indian Navy and Cochin Shipyard to indigenously design and build an Aircraft Carrier.

With the delivery of IAC, India would join a select group of nations with the capability to indigenously design and build an Aircraft Carrier, which will be a real testimony to the ‘Make in India’ thrust of the Indian Government.

The Indigenous construction of Aircraft Carrier is a shining example in the Nation’s quest for ‘Atma Nirbhar Bharat’ and ‘Make in India Initiative’. This has led to growth in indignous design and construction capabilities besides development of large number of ancillary industries, with employment opportunities for 2000 CSL personnel and about 12000 employees in ancillary industries. Over 76% indigenous content towards procurement of equipment, besides work by CSL and their subcontractors is being directly invested back into the Indian economy. Around 550 Indian firms including about 100 MSMEs are registered with CSL, who are providing various services for construction of IAC. Reference


05 Aug: Allianz warns on crew change crisis and ship safety

The crew change crisis continues to have a major impact on the health and wellbeing of seafarers, with potential long-term implications for safety, the insurance company declared in its latest Safety and Shipping Review 2021.

In addition to the humanitarian and crew welfare issues, there are increasing risks that crew fatigue could lead to human error and even serious accidents, Allianz said. Meanwhile, attracting young people to a life at sea is likely to become a growing challenge in the future.

The insurer’s Captain Nitin Chopra, Senior Marine Risk Consultant, quoted in the review, said: “Timely crew changes are vital to the safe operation of shipping, and seafarers spending extended periods on board are more at risk of mental health issues, exhaustion, fatigue, anxiety and mental stress … If crews are fatigued, a vessel could potentially be considered unseaworthy under international maritime law.”

The insurer highlighted the issue of compliance. According to the International Labour Organization’s Maritime Labour Convention, seafarers should spend no more than 11 months continuously at sea and are entitled to access onshore medical facilities and care. Many thousands of seafarers are thought to have been held at sea for longer than this and, if ship operators are deemed to be in breach of the regulations, ships could have to suspend their operations, Allianz warned.

In reality though few countries have strictly enforced with the 11 month limit for crew on international trading ships with the notable exception of Australia

The insurer referred to reports that at least two crew members on board the large bulk carrier, Wakashio, had been working for well over the 11-month limit when it ran aground off the coast of Mauritius just over a year ago. The vessel caused a catastrophic pollution incident and still lies where she grounded. Reference


04 Aug: Ultra-Thin Solar Panels Deployed on Hatch Covers for Inland Shipping

A Dutch start-up company is working on a novel application of solar panels to make inland shipping vessels operating from Rotterdam more environmentally friendly and sustainable. With access via the Maas and Rhine rivers and links with the Main and Danube that enables transport to the Black Sea, inland shipping is a significant element of the operations from the Port of Rotterdam.

With the energy transition, we have to make smart use of the space that is available,” says Bo Salet, co-founder of Wattlab. “We are developing new applications for solar energy and generating energy where it is needed.”

Wattlab is developing and designing a broad range of solar power applications. The company is testing prototypes using wafer-thin lightweight solar foils and bendable robust solar panels to flexible panels. In this way, the company says it can make a wide variety of solar panels which meet unique requirements.

By installing the solar panels on the vessel’s hatches, the company explains that it is using existing space while not interfering with the navigation or cargo operations of the vessel. The panels are generating power for the propulsion of the vessel as well as the operation of systems from navigation to cranes, pumps, and lights and power in the accommodations areas. Solar power can replace the use of diesel generators with the company estimating the financial return for the investment in solar between five and eight years. Reference


03 Aug: Pollution mapping app goes live

The industry-backed Eyesea pollution mapping initiative has gone live following six months of testing onboard commercial ships, recreational boats, and with community volunteers. The Eyesea app is now available on Google Play and in the Apple App stores.

The pollution mapping initiative collects and processes oceanic pollution data, now via the click of a smartphone.

The data is used to build detailed maps and charts available free of charge to governments, clean-up groups, researchers, local authorities and a range of other stakeholders, enabling them to take targeted clean-up action and make evidence-based policy decisions.

Graeme Somerville-Ryan, cofounder of Eyesea, commented: “It’s been quite a voyage over the last six months. Over this time we have received overwhelming support from maritime companies, seafarers, and recreational sailors who see what is going on and who want to help. Our member company fleet continues to grow we are looking at partnerships with yachting and superyacht associations, yacht clubs, tech providers, crew associations, and international clean-up NGOs. The feedback we have received from seafarers and coastal volunteers has been humbling – they all want the same thing and have given us enormous support testing the app.”

Crowdsourcing maritime pollution data is the democratisation of environmental care initiatives – anyone can do it and each picture collected has value. The app is anonymous, we don’t know if the data is coming in from a bulk carrier, a superyacht, a container ship, a pilot boat, or a yacht,” Somerville-Ryan said, adding: “At the company level, I have never seen cooperation quite like this – in any sector. Everyone understands we need a unified effort to make a difference, the ocean is too wide and the coasts are too long for us to act alone.” Reference


03 Aug: New ITF web tool helps seafarers steer clear of shady manning agents launches today to give those looking for work on cruise or cargo ships the kind of insight they need to negotiate sound contracts and avoid the perils of shady manning agents.

India, Indonesia, Myanmar, Philippines to start

It features a directory of manning agents that have been rated by the ITF as either green (good to go) or red (best avoided). The site initially covers four countries that are major crew suppliers but will be expanded to eventually include much of the world. The launch countries are India, Indonesia, Myanmar and the Philippines.

‘Every year, thousands of seafarers are scammed or defrauded,’ said Steve Trowsdale, the ITF onspectorate coordinator. ‘Our inspectors have long experience in identifying the illegal practices of dubious agents. We wanted to pass on that knowledge so seafarers can find good, reliable work.’

Trowsdale hopes the web tool will stamp out fake, rogue and non-compliant agents.

Links to employment pages of cruise ship operators

The site helps seafarers understand what good manning agents can do for them, and what bad agents may try. It details what they should expect in a contract and how they can make sure they’re getting a fair deal. It also includes links to the employment pages of cruise ship operators.

Guide to spot scams

‘Scams to trick job-seekers out of money or to steal their documentation are proliferating,’ Trowsdale said. ‘ITFShipBeSure also includes a guide to spot these scams and a regularly updated section that highlights the scams we know about. The golden rule is: if a job looks too good to be true it almost certainly is.’

Some scams look highly professional and it’s all too easy to fall into their trap. But ShipBeSure includes a Look Up section where seafarers can search on ships or find contact details for their nearest union representative or ITF inspector. Reference


02 Aug: India takes over UNSC presidency for August; maritime security, counter-terrorism key priorities

India on Sunday assumed the presidency of the United Nations Security Council for the month of August and is set to organise key events in three major areas of maritime security, peacekeeping and counter-terrorism.

Tirumurti had said that the situation in Afghanistan is of deep concern to all members of the Security Council and “we have seen that in recent days, the violence is only increasing.” (Screengrab Twitter/@ambtstirumurti)

As part of its new role, India will decide the UN body’s agenda for the month and coordinate important meetings on a range of issues. “Security Council will also have on its agenda several important meetings including Syria, Iraq, Somalia, Yemen, and the Middle East. Security Council will also be adopting important resolutions on Somalia, Mali, & UN Interim Force in Lebanon,” TS Tirumurti said.

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar took to Twitter to mark the occasion, and said that India will always be ” voice of moderation, an advocate of dialogue and a proponent of international law.”

Apart from meeting on maritime security, peacekeeping and counter-terrorism, India will also be organising a solemn event in memory of peacekeepers.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be the first Indian PM to preside over a meeting of the UNSC, Former permanent representative of India to the United Nations, Syed Akbaruddin said. Reference

Note: This is the compilation of news published from various sources. The references of source are given with each news item.

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