California-Shanghai Green Shipping Corridor Outlines Implementation Plan

Singapore freight forwarders – Star Concord

Plans for the creation of what is being called the first trans-Pacific green shipping corridor are beginning to come together with a goal of launching the initiative with the first reduced or zero carbon ships by 2025. The Ports of Los Angeles, Long Beach, and the City of Shanghai along with the group C40 Cities made up of mayors of nearly 100 cities, announced the development of the Green Shipping Corridor Implementation Plan Outline.

The Southern California ports and Shanghai represented by the Shanghai Municipal Transportation Commission were the first to announce plans for a green corridor after the initiative was launched at the UN’s COP 26 conference. Noting that it is one of the business shipping corridors in the world, they said the goal was to provide a model and to help the industry accelerate its efforts for decarbonization.

Rolling out their plan, they set a timeline for the implementation. CMA CGM, COSCO, Maersk, and Ocean Network Express (ONE) have joined the program as the carrier participants and they are committing to begin to deploy reduced- or zero-lifecycle carbon-capable ships on the corridor by 2025. The organization will work together to demonstrate by 2030, the feasibility of deploying the first zero-lifecycle carbon emission containerships.

Outlining their initiative, the organizations said their goal is to showcase cutting-edge goods movement technologies, decarbonization applications, and best management practices to enhance efficiency and catalyze technological, economic, and policy efforts to progressively decarbonize shipping and port-related activities.

“This trans-Pacific green corridor will be a model for the global cooperation needed to accelerate change throughout the maritime industry. Reducing emissions in this corridor will yield significant reductions,” said Gene Seroka, Executive Director of the Port of Los Angeles. He notes that the corridor will focus on mid-ocean emissions while the ports will continue their work to cut emissions at each end of the global trade gateway.

Cargo owners are also joining the effort along with the carriers and ports. Other core participants include the Shanghai International Port Group, the China Classification Society, and the Maritime Technology Cooperation Center of Asia.

In addition to the focus on low-emission ships, the project looks to increase the use of shore power and support the development of a clean marine fueling infrastructure. Cargo owners have set goals to contract with carriers to use zero carbon emission services. All the partners will develop metrics to track the progress in decarbonization. They expect to develop the details during 2023 and 2024 on monitoring and reporting in the initiative. Other efforts are ongoing currently including a fuel demand/supply analysis as well as mapping out the timeline for infrastructure development.

Earlier in the week, the initiative to establish a Rotterdam-Shanghai green corridor also mapped out its progress and efforts at launching a similar effort. They discussed studies that are underway and the formation of working groups to focus on key elements needed for the implementation of what will be the world’s longest green corridor. 

The Rotterdam-Shanghai initiative said that they are working towards reducing greenhouse gas emissions on the international shipping corridor by 20 percent while striving for 30 percent by 2030, compared to 2022. The first phase toward net-zero they point out will be achieved through the development and uptake of zero and near-zero emission fuels in containerships with a capacity of at least 8,000 TEU deployed on the 15,000 km route, supported by a combination of operational and digital efficiencies.  

A broad range of short-sea and other international routes have followed since the signing of the global declaration in November 2021. Plans are underway for other green corridors that also seek to support decarbonization following similar elements focusing on fuels, ships, and port operations.




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