04 September 2019
Europe’s largest feeder and short sea operator, Unifeeder and vessel-based machine learning specialist GreenSteam, are expanding their partnership to pave the way for sustainable shipping.
In a joint statement the two organisations said GHG emissions caused by vessels have long been a major challenge facing the modern shipping industry. Vessels are still considered one of the most environmentally friendly solutions for transporting goods, due to a lower emission of carbon dioxide per tonne and kilometer compared to conventional road transport. However, given the scale of the maritime industry, its contribution to the overall air condition remains significant.
In recent years, the IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee has introduced a strategy focusing on reducing annual GHG emissions from international shipping by at least 50% by 2050 compared to the levels in 2008. Considering the challenges for the next decade and beyond, the use of digital technology to reduce fuel consumption is one of the most prevalent and promising tactics in pursuing these ambitious targets.
Being a key player in global and regional supply chains and a front runner of innovative transport solutions, Unifeeder recognises its environmental responsibilities in minimising the impact of its marine operations on the climate. “Unifeeder wants to be an active participant in finding innovative solutions and by partnering with GreenSteam, we are working with a technology leader whose machine learning knowledge can provide significant operational benefits and minimise the environmental impact. Together we have proven the concept through a pilot study and based on the promising results, we are now ready to expand the partnership and deploy the platform to more of our vessels. We are excited to be partnering with a company who shares our values and strives to challenge the industry standards in order to create a positive and lasting change,’’ said Annemette Jepsen, COO of Unifeeder.
Understanding how to reduce fuel consumption is a complex process which involves several variables. GreenSteam’s platform looks for combinations of variables that mostly affect fuel consumption. Based on these findings, machine learning delivers accurate insights into where large and small efficiency gains can be made and then delivers predictive advice on how to optimise the vessel’s performance.
Unifeeder has engaged various vessel owners in the evaluation and will work closely with them in an on-going data sharing process. Together, the partners are committed to providing shippers with a green identity through fully sustainable transport solutions, that are not only better for the environment but also maximize operational efficiency.
GreenSteam’s Chairman Shaun Gray stated, “Unifeeder is a business that has been working with us for a few years while the technology got developed, recognizing early on the challenges the industry was facing. We use the term partnership because this is an open, on-going and forward-thinking relationship. There are many thought leaders in the shipping industry recognizing that new challenges will require new solutions and co-operation between Charterers and Owners is required to maximise efficiency. In this regard, Unifeeder has been a pioneer and a fantastic partner to work with and we look forward to continuing our partnership on an expanded basis.”
GreenSteam’s platform, developed over the last decade specifically for the marine sector, is now available with a data-only based service as well as on-board solutions that provide real-time decision support for voyage optimisation.
GreenSteam has also recently announced that it has enhanced its optimisation modules to include Speed optimisation, technology performance, and Hull fouling and coatings analysis, in addition to its established trim optimisation solutions. Further modules related to efficiency will be released throughout 2019 and beyond, with Route optimisation as the next major release.