This time of the year is always a good opportunity to consider lessons learned and set new year’s resolutions for a new start. Our special column Industry Voices: ‘Goodbye 2020, hello 2021’ aims to provide an overview of this challenging year and set new targets for 2021 to move forward.
In this context, we have asked Mr. Frantzeskos D. Kontos, DPA at Prime Marine Management, to make an assessment of 2020 from his perspective and share his message for the new year across the global community. Among others, he highlights that industry’s main focus should be on the reduction of shipping environmental footprint and start considering safety and environmental targets as challenges for improvement rather than burdens.
I would like shipping to learn from industry’s mistakes, bounce back after failures/ incidents and set meaningful and achievable recovery plans.
SAFETY4SEA: Focusing on your area of expertise, what were the most important industry development(s) within 2020?
Frantzeskos Kontos: 2020 was a year with plenty key developments & events. If we had to distinguish top three, I would list the following :
- The new Environmental / Energy Efficiency Regulations that are either imposed or are under discussion (ETS, EEXI, CII).
- The change of our working habits (due to pandemic). Teleworking, teleconferences, remote trainings and surveys / assessments have been introduced in our working routines and are here to stay. The technological boost will further support their widespread use.
- The Sulphur Cap implementation from 01.01.2020 that although has not overall disrupted the industry service capacity and the flow of goods, has nevertheless affected the flawless operation of several Main Engines (liners and piston rings scuffing, over-lubrication, need of frequent inspections / overhauls etc.).
S4S: Focusing on your area of expertise, what do you think that will be the biggest challenge(s) for the industry in 2021?
Fr.K.: The outcome of MEPC 76 next June that will define the details of EEXI and CII implementation, thus affecting vessels service power/speed and industry’s environmental footprint for the years to come. The adoption of Energy saving devices, alternative fuels and high end antifouling paints will be widely processed in the aftermath of MEPC 76.
S4S: What would be the 2021 resolutions for your company/organisation?
Fr.K.: Prime’s first priority in 2021 remains to further enhance operations safety and reduce the environmental footprint of vessels and office operations. A strategy is already in place to enhance existing vessels efficiency, introduce alternative fuels in Newbuildings and be actively involved in industry’s partnerships dealing with decarbonisation and sustainability projects. The aim is to fully embrace actions derived from ESG, deepening its implementation within the organization.
S4S: What is your overall forecast for shipping industry in 2021 and what would you like to share and/or wish and/or ask other industry stakeholders?
Fr.K.: It is very uncertain to draw future perspectives, this has been absolutely proven within 2020. Our main focus should be on the reduction of shipping environmental footprint, the compliance with the 2030/2050 emission targets while the vision shall remain zero carbon emissions from industry’s activities.
The views presented hereabove are only those of the author and do not necessarily those of SAFETY4SEA and are for information sharing and discussion purposes only.