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The Lloyd’s List Podcast: Why decarbonisation requires more than aspirational soundbites

Listen to the latest edition of the Lloyd’s List’s weekly podcast — your free weekly briefing on the stories shaping shipping

The transition to zero-carbon shipping is riddled with uncertainties, most outside of the control of shipping companies and the industry itself, so why do so many shipping executives seem so certain about timelines and fuel strategy? ‘This is not a challenge where success is measured by the best soundbite or the best aspirational goal or date you set yourself,’ counters Bud Darr, MSC’s executive vice-president of maritime policy and government affairs in this week’s podcast.


SHIPPING’s zero-carbon transition needs to be accelerated, but too many factors lie outside of shipping’s control for anyone to make decisions with any real certainty, far less offer a precise date for genuinely zero-carbon operations.

“When it comes to decarbonisation there is still a lot of uncertainty and we shouldn’t kid ourselves suggesting otherwise,” argues Bud Darr, MSC’s executive vice-president of maritime policy and government affairs in this week’s podcast.

“It’s one thing to say we have the [zero-carbon] ships, but another to say we have the fuel available when and where we need it,” he explains, discussing MSC’s leadership strategy and zero carbon plans.

The fact that decarbonisation will touch every aspect of shipping’s future, is well understood. But nailing down the specific implications for shipping amid an increasingly nebulous industry debate is not always easy.

The direction of travel is set, but the devil in the detail is yet to reveal itself and the energy transition is not going to be uniform.

The stakes are high and many of the companies operating today are not going to survive this transition, so the conversation this week is starting to look in a little more depth at the decisions required and the tipping points that will decide who are the winners and who are the losers.

Mr Darr talks candidly to Lloyd’s List Editor Richard Meade about fuel choices, innovation, efficiency investment and why collaboration is more than just a buzz word.

Next month, on May 12, Lloyd’s List will be expanding on many of these issues in our How to Decarbonise Shipping webinar, part of our Future of Shipping programme.

Podcast listeners can register for free to attend the event here.

Sign up now for the second webinar in the Lloyd's List Future of Shipping programme, titled ‘How to decarbonise shipping

Across the year, The Future of Shipping series will gather industry leaders, policy-makers, investors, financiers and sector experts to offer a unique programme of informed analysis and intelligent debate. For more information, to watch the first webinar on digitalisation on-demand and to register for the other events in the series, follow this link.

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