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DHL and GoodShipping sign exclusive MoU to cut ocean freight carbon

DHL Global Forwarding, the air and ocean freight specialist of Deutsche Post DHL Group, and the GoodShipping Program, the world's first initiative to decarbonize the container shipping industry by changing the marine fuel mix, have signed an exclusive Memorandum of Understanding. The MoU will enable DHL Global Forwarding to become the first to offer its customers the opportunity to select next-generation marine biofuels rather than fossil fuels for their transports by sea.

Deutsche Post DHL Group has been exploring renewable fuels as an important lever to minimize ocean freights’ impact on the environment (photo courtesy DHL Global Forwarding).

The partnership with the GoodShipping Program is a unique opportunity to drive change within the ocean freight industry and to contribute to DHL’s environmental target of zero emissions by 2050. Our joint advanced biofuel service is designed as a supplement to our GoGreen Climate Neutral services or as an alternative, giving our customers, even more, opportunity to reduce their carbon footprint, said Kathrin Brost, Global Head Customer Intelligence & GoGreen, DHL Global Forwarding.

Deutsche Post DHL Group has been exploring renewable fuels as an important lever to minimize ocean freights’ impact on the environment. Key criteria are that they are produced sustainably and do not compete for example with food production for land use.

Following strict sustainability standards, the waste-based biofuels must meet the requirements to be qualified as the cleanest biofuels currently available on the market. Based on a like to like approach, the current container fleet can bunker and burn advanced marine biofuel without any technical modifications.

DHL’s mission to reach zero emission logistics by 2050 made them a perfect partner for a strategic and mutually beneficial long-term cooperation. Together with DHL, we provide global access to every single cargo owner that wants to help us clean up the marine fuel mix, said Astrid Sonneveld, Program Director at GoodShipping.

According to DHL, the new service is based on the principle that greenhouse gas (GHG) reductions are allocated to the customers. Each customer signing up for the service, orders truly green TEU-kilometers (a TEU-km is the equivalent of one twenty-foot container transported one kilometre) instead of just a regular shipment, with or without carbon offsets. The corresponding volumes of advanced biofuel will be used onboard of vessels of selected ocean carrier partners during regular operations.

The more shippers use the new service, the higher the share of advanced biofuels for container shipping and the reduction of carbon emissions. The environmental benefits are quantified and protected from double claims and the CO2-benefits are allocated to the customer.

Apart from reducing carbon emissions to zero, biofuels are essentially free of sulphur. The switch to clean-burning biofuels allows for very substantial reductions of particulate matter and some improvement of NOx performance.

In 2012, shipments transported via ocean freight in logistics accounted for approximately 2.2 percent of all carbon emissions globally and it is expected that this could increase to 17 percent of total global emissions by 2050, therefore underscoring the important role that carbon reduction can play within the shipping industry.

With this development ahead the new GoodShipping service is a crucial element in paving the way for DHL’s corporate mission to reduce all logistics-related emissions to zero by 2050. The partnership agreement of DHL Global Forwarding and the GoodShipping Program is exclusive. Early 2018 the new service will be available to DHL’s customers.

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