Maersk Line’s Focus on Energy Efficiency Pays Off

Mon, 18 March 2013

There is especially one result that stands out in Maersk Line’s 2012 Sustainability Progress Update:
“Maersk Line’s energy efficiency improvements in 2012 have led to a remarkable achievement which we are very proud of: we have met our 25% CO2 emissions reduction target eight years early,” says Søren Skou, CEO of Maersk Liner Business.
Earlier this year, Maersk Line announced that it will now go for a 40% CO2 reduction per container kilometre by 2020 (baseline: 2007). The Triple-E vessels, which Maersk Line will start to take delivery of mid-2013, will contribute greatly to reaching the new CO2 target for 2020.
Customers are increasingly valuing sustainability performance. Maersk Line has witnessed an increasing number of customers requesting sustainability data or engaging in dialogue on the issue. In 2012, Maersk Line’s customers saved 2.1 million tonnes of CO2 by shipping with Maersk Line compared to choosing a shipping line with an industry average performance.
“We welcome and encourage this interest and hope to see much more of it in 2013. An increased demand for shipping services with a strong sustainability profile will help drive industry-wide change, thereby enabling more sustainable global trade,” says Søren Skou.
The dollar value of the energy efficiency improvements is clear: If Maersk Line had not improved its efficiency since 2007, the fuel cost would have been approximately USD 1.6bn higher in 2012, effectively swinging Maersk Line’s overall financial result from positive to negative.

Container sustainability has also seen good progress. Since 2010, Maersk Line has had a policy to only buy new containers with sustainability floorboards (bamboo or FSC-certified hardwood). Approximately 30% of Maersk Line’s container fleet is now equipped with sustainable floorboards.
On the other hand, it has been a less satisfactory year for workplace safety. While the frequency of accidents declined, Maersk Line experienced a total of four fatalities in 2012.
“Any fatality is unacceptable. Our target is to bring the number of fatalities down to zero, and we are working hard to minimise the number of work-related accidents,” continues Søren Skou.

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