Methanol Insitute (MI) issued a position paper calling on policy-makers to adopt a ‘well-to-wake’ approach in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions accounting of fuels, to support the decarbonization of maritime transport.
I believes an approach that accounts for GHG emissions of the fuel’s entire value chain is essential to stimulate the uptake of renewable fuels that can drive the maritime industry’s energy transition.
The increased integration of low carbon and net carbon neutral fuels at an accelerated rate is fundamental to attain the decarbonisation targets laid out by the European Union and the International Maritime Organization, aimed at protecting Earth’s climate from harmful greenhouse gas emissions.
To effectively stimulate the uptake of fuels that will drive the maritime industry’s energy transition, policymakers must employ mechanisms that account for the GHG emissions of the fuel’s entire lifecycle.
The arguments laid out in this position paper support the Methanol Institute’s policy recommendation of applying a well-to-wake approach in GHG accounting of maritime transport on the basis of the following key implications:
- Policy should present investment signals to foster innovation and renewable power generation at scale to address the reduction of GHG emissions based on the entire environmental profile of fuels to avoid incentivizing the large-scale reallocation of GHG emissions to upstream fuel production processes;
- The burden of decarbonization should belong to the entire maritime sector;
- The imminent threat of climate change and the associated fast-approaching targets require a mechanism that supports the uptake of sustainable fuels without delay; and
- Not only should policy present investment signals it should incorporate incentives.
The maritime industry needs better information on which alternative fuels provide practical, adoptable choices that comply with prevailing regulation and present manageable investment, operational and financial risks.
Oversall, the Methanol Institute calls on the International Maritime Organization to adopt a mechanism to reflect the benefits of different fuels and provide ship operators with signals upon which to assess their options.
The Methanol Institute appeals to the International Maritime Organization to recognize the necessity to:
- Apply a robust LCA (life cycle analysis) regarding GHG guidelines for all types of marine fuels which will consider CO2 on a well-to-wake basis, to be used in CII calculations and other relevant regulations such as market-based measures.
- Apply a dual-term greenhouse gas accounting standard: 20-year Global Warming Potential (GWP) alongside the presently accepted 100-year GWPs.