Low Carbon Shipping & Shipping in Changing Climates

A Research Led Consortium on Sustainable Shipping


COP 24 official side-event and webinar

Achieving the IMO GHG Reduction Objectives: Fossil fuels, climate change and economic development

Date: Monday, December 3rd, 18.30-20.00, CET

In April 2018, the International Maritime Organization committed to reduce GHG emissions from international shipping by ‘at least’ 50% compared to 2008 levels and to phase out fossil fuels as quickly as possible this century. This side-event will discuss the key questions arising from this outcome:
1) What rate of decarbonisation has IMO adopted in its Initial Strategy?
2) What are the decarbonisation pathways, technologies and options for achieving the Strategy?
3) What might the specific policy measures to achieve those pathways be?
4) Could shipping’s decarbonisation increase costs and create economic impacts on states, what could be done to address this?

This event (video, audio and slides) will be broadcast live via Skype Meeting Broadcast, and also available afterwards in the UNFCCC side event webcast archive. Participants to the live broadcast can ask questions which will be seen by the moderator.

IMO – Dr Edmund Hughes, Head Air Pollution and Energy Efficiency
IPIECA – Jim Herbertson, Technical Director, Cliamte and Energy
Japan Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism – Kohei Iwaki, Maritime Bureau
UCL – Tristan Smith, Reader in Energy and Transport, co-chair CPLC

Lecturer in Energy and Transport at UCL Energy Institute

The UCL Energy Institute’s shipping group is hiring a new faculty member in the shipping team, looking for excellent candidates with a passion for research, teaching and enterprise activity that can contribute constructively to the decarbonisation of international shipping.

We are seeking to appoint a Lecturer in Energy and Transport who will be responsible for leading grant applications and delivering research projects, preparing and delivering teaching and expanding the group's enterprise activity.

As a core member of the Energy and Transport team’s shipping group, this individual has an opportunity to participate in the development and expansion of the UCL Energy Institute’s world leading work on shipping GHG reduction and related transport and energy demand teaching, research and enterprise. The successful candidate will be responsible for leading grant applications and delivering research projects, preparing and delivering teaching particularly in the new UCL Energy ESDA MSc programme, and expanding the group’s enterprise activity.

With the emphasis towards the disciplines associated with data analytics, the ideal candidate is experienced in quantitiative analysis, data-centric modelling and energy epidemiology. The candidate should have a background in transport and energy related topics and ideally the shipping sector.

Closing date: 10th June
Interview date: TBC

To download the full job description and to apply please visit the UCL Human Resrouces website.



The IMO’s 2018 climate agreement explained

The shipping industry's commitment to reduce CO2 emissions by 'at least' 50% is major progress towards aligning international shipping to the Paris goals, but leaves more work to be done.

The Shipping in Changing Climates consortium welcomes the International Maritime Organisation’s (IMO) commitment to significantly cut the industry’s GHG emissions by 2050, calling the initial strategy ‘major progress’.

So what does the climate agreement mean?

- It signals the end of fossil fuels in shipping by mid-century
- The deal will be reviewed in light of IPCC 1.5C report 
- Broad industry support for decarbonisation
- UN has under 5 years to deliver initial GHG reduction plan

Read our full analysis on the adoption of the Initial IMO GHG Strategy

Shipping in Changing Climates Conference 2017 - Registrations now open

Timetabled to take place a week before the London International Shipping Week 2017, 4th -5th September 2017, the Shipping in Changing Climates consortium’s fourth international conference in association with Institute of Marine Engineering, Science & Technology (IMarEST), will present new research from academia and industry on the latest perspectives on shipping efficiency and emissions.

The conference is framed around ambitious GHG reductions that are required from shipping to keep its emissions in line with the temperature goals of the Paris Agreement. The Paris Agreement temperature goals limit the increase in global temperatures to no more than 2°C, aiming for 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels and thus provides some direction as to the course of action that the shipping sector needs to take. The consortiums work to date shows that under both the 2°C and 1.5°C framing of climate change (emissions budgets), taking into account the latest IPCC and IMO studies, and shipping maintaining its current share of 2.3 per cent of global emissions, the shipping sector must halve its emissions by 2050 under the 2°C scenario and achieve carbon neutrality by 2050 under the 1.5°C scenario. Translating this at the ship level, the aggregate average operational CO2 intensity for all ship sizes of containerships, tankers and dry bulk (which account for over 60 per cent of the shipping sector’s emissions) requires a reduction of 80-90 per cent on 2012 levels by 2050 in the 2°C scenario and net zero emissions in the 1.5°C scenario by 2045. 

Keeping the above ambition at the fore, the conference will have papers and presentations from both industry and academia in the following areas, modelling and analysis of the shipping system, alternative fuels, technologies and operations, future trade and transport demand for shipping, policies for accelerating a transition to a low carbon shipping system, finance, investment appraisal and removal of market barriers. 

The conference is organised by the Shipping Research Group at UCL Energy Institute, academic partners of the SCC consortium. 

For the provisional agenda click here.                     

Industry participants include: Shell, Lloyds Register, BMT, Maritime Strategies International, IMarEST, Silverstream Technologies, UMAS, SINTEF Ocean, Carbon War Room, Sustainable Shipping Initiative, Clarksons, Port of Rotterdam, KfW, IWSA, IMO and many others

REGISTER FOR THE CONFERENCE                                                                                                                                      In association with



Shipping in Changing Climates: Key research outputs & industry reflections, 11th September

Following the Shipping in Changing Climates consortium’s fourth international conference to held on 4-5th September at UCL, this free event open to all will present a summary of the key research outputs of the ~£4m project during the London International Shipping Week 2017

Academic partners of the SCC consortium will present the high-level outputs of the three themes of the project, followed by reflections from the SCC industry partners and other shipping stakeholders. This will be followed by a Q&A session and a networking reception.


New Report States Wind Technology Can Yield Up To 60% Fuel Savings For Ships

Carbon War Room and University College London (UCL) Energy Institute have published a paper reviewing the opportunities and barriers to the adoption of wind technology in the international shipping industry, as part of their joint Shipping Innovation Fast Tracker (ShIFT) program.

The study, published in the Journal of Marine Policy, is titled "Wind technologies: Opportunities and barriers to a low carbon shipping industry"and shows that economic barriers, such as risk and access to capital, are hindering adoption of this promising technology. Third-party capital, in combination with best-in-class data collection and analysis, offers one solution to overcoming these barriers.

The exact fuel savings that can be achieved via the adoption of such wind propulsion technologies will depend on the design of the ship (particularly the rig and hull), the operating speed, and the wind speeds and wind directions experienced along the ship’s route. Voyage simulation and modeling by UCL estimates that wind technologies can deliver fuel savings anywhere from 10–60%. Wind technologies can even allow older, less-efficient ships to operate competitively with new ships, especially along the busy shipping routes in the North Pacific, North Sea, and Southern Ocean that have favorable wind conditions.

The executive summary is available HERE

The full journal paper is available free to access HERE