A.P. Møller – Mærsk has accelerated its efforts to decarbonise marine operations and plans to launch a carbon-neutral liner vessel in 2023 – seven years ahead of its initial 2030 ambition.

The shipping company has also affirmed that all future Maersk-owned newbuildings will have dual-fuel technology installed, enabling either carbon-neutral operations or operation on standard very-low sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO).

Søren Skou, ceo at A.P. Møller – Mærsk, said: “Our customers expect us to help them decarbonise their global supply chains, and we are embracing the challenge, working on solving the practical, technical and safety challenges inherent in the carbon neutral fuels we need in the future. Our ambition to have a carbon neutral fleet by 2050 was a moonshot when we announced in 2018. Today we see it as a challenging, yet achievable target to reach.”

Maersk’s methanol feeder vessel will have a capacity of around 2,000 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.

Interestingly, Maersk said that around half of its 200 largest customers have set – or are in the process of setting – ambitious science-based or zero carbon targets for their supply chains, and the figure is on the rise.