London-based waste management company Cory announced that its fleet of tugs, operating on the Thames, will run on biofuel, in line with the UK’s target of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
he move follows successful trials that have resulted in a reduction of net CO2 emissions by 90% – a major step in decarbonizing the company’s river operations and transport on London’s river, where the current fleet of tugs are responsible for transporting more than 1 million tonnes of recyclable and non-recyclable waste per year.
The biofuel, hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO), is expected to bring additional air quality benefits – reducing NOx and particulate matter emissions by 19% and 21% respectively. HVO is produced from waste materials such as used cooking oil and waste fats, which do not release any new CO2 into the atmosphere.
While this is a great step forward to decarbonization, the company recognizes that HVO is a temporary measure, so it is also exploring opportunities for zero-carbon marine vessels, said Dougie Sutherland, CEO of Cory.
As we look to the future, which includes plans to invest £800 million into new projects in London and the South East, the river will continue to play a pivotal role in our operations. It’s therefore vital that we ensure that we invest in the sustainability of our tugs – and in doing so, help the UK to address the decarbonization of shipping, another key aspect of the country’s net-zero target, while improving air quality. An added benefit of using HVO as fuel in our tugs is that it is fundamentally a waste product – and this fits perfectly with our wider approach of ensuring that no waste is wasted,