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The Methanol Institute (MI) has welcomed AP Moller – Maersk as the association’s newest member company. Maersk recently announced that its first carbon-neutral vessel, being launched in 2023 will be a methanol dual-fuel ship.

In December 2018, Maersk announced its ambition of net-zero CO2 emissions by 2050 and has since identified its primary fuel candidates to be carbon-neutral methanol (bio-methanol and e-methanol), alcohol-lignin blends and carbon-neutral ammonia along with the use of biofuels.

In February 2021, Maersk announced the launch of the world’s first liner vessel to operate on carbon-neutral methanol in 2023 – seven years ahead of the initial 2030 ambition. All future Maersk-owned newbuildings will have dual-fuel technology installed, enabling both carbon neutral operations and operation on standard VLSFO.

Maersk’s first methanol feeder vessel will have a capacity of around 2000 TEU and be deployed in one of its intra-regional networks. While the vessel will be able to operate on standard VLSFO, the plan is to operate the vessel on carbon neutral e-methanol or sustainable bio-methanol from day one.

“In pioneering this technology, it will be a significant challenge to source an adequate supply of carbon neutral methanol within the timeline we have set ourselves,” said Berit Hinnemann, Senior Innovation Project Manager, AP Moller – Maersk. “We have a lot of work ahead of us to find the projects which are truly scalable, carbon-neutral and capable of meeting strict life cycle analysis criteria. Maersk is very pleased to join the Methanol Institute and is looking forward to further engagement with green methanol suppliers to advance the introduction of carbon neutral methanol in global shipping.”

MI CEO Gregory Dolan noted that, “MI is delighted to welcome Maersk as our newest member. Maersk’s choice of methanol as the fuel for its first dual fuel vessel sends a strong signal to the shipping industry that methanol is a marine fuel for today and tomorrow.”