Navigating Climate Change 

How can the maritime industry protect the environment with solutions that are both sustainable for business growth and the planet? 

The challenges faced 

According to the Sea Cargo Charter, international shipping is responsible for 2-3% of global greenhouse gas emissions annually. In fact, if the international shipping sector was a country, it would be the 6th biggest emitter.  
Fortunately, governments and industry organisations are driving the move towards more sustainable practices and since 1997, environmental regulations on ships and ports have increased. The result is that the maritime sector is now not only morally obliged to change its practices but required to do so by law. 
There’s an increasing sense of urgency arising from the escalating deterioration of the environment, and as a result, stakeholders across the maritime sector have begun to pay more attention to sustainability issues and many positive changes are now taking place. 

What does climate change mean for you? 

The environment is now a high priority for governments and businesses all over the globe which means that the maritime industry is under huge pressure to change. Ship owners are facing more scrutiny from customers and authorities but are also beginning to recognise the economic merits and commercial opportunities open to them when they adopt more sustainable practices. 
It’s clear that with an industry as large and diverse as the maritime sector there will be a great many issues to overcome and for this reason the International Marine Purchasing Association (IMPA) founded the IMPA SAVE initiative in 2020 which aims to support the call to action for UN Sustainability Goals and bring knowledge of available sustainable solutions to the marine and offshore industry. 
Stephen Alexander, Chief Operating Officer and Secretary General of the IMPA SAVE Council for Maritime Supply Chain Sustainability, reports that shipping companies and suppliers are now prioritising sustainability and that product life cycles, waste management and supply chain management are key areas of concern. 
The issues faced by the maritime sector in regard to sustainability are numerous, and include: 

Reducing Emissions 

The International Maritime Organisation (IMO) estimates that shipping emissions are set to increase by up to 120% by 2050, which means that shipping could represent a massive 10% of global green house gas emissions (GHG) by 2050. 

Reducing Plastics 

More than 8 million tons of plastic end up in our oceans every year, and floating plastic debris are currently the most abundant items of marine litter. 

Waste Management 

Waste management also represents a huge challenge for the maritime sector because it’s not just about what manufactures and suppliers do in terms or providing environmentally friendly materials, it’s also about what happens in ports in relation to how things are recycled and managed. 

Responsible Supply Chain Management 

Responsible supply chain management comprises a number of different priorities, including environmental protection, the reduction of carbon, social responsibility and the conservation of resources. 

Green Supply Chain Management 

Green supply chain management (GSCM) involved the integration of environmental directives into supply chain management. The key principle behind GSCM is to pursue a reduction in environmental impacts by focusing on actions which promote sustainability and mitigate environmental impact. 

Environmental Protection Legislation

As environmental deterioration escalates and pollution levels increase, it becomes increasingly urgent to drive tangible change in this area. Communities all over the globe are calling for a cleaner and more sustainable environment and this is a significant contributing factor to driving environmental protection legislation. 
Whilst the move towards more sustainable practises represents a significant opportunity for the maritime industry, it also demands the complete transformation of the sector.

Download the full Whitepaper (Part 1)