This week, paint and coatings manufacturer AkzoNobel issued 126,785 carbon credits – worth over $500,000 – to 16 ships that reduced their emissions by switching the coating on their hulls. The vessels were ‘rigorously assessed’ by an independent auditor, RINA Services and The Gold Standard Foundation, to verify their fuel consumption data.
AkzoNobel developed the award-winning scheme in partnership with carbon certification standard organization The Gold Standard Foundation to make eco-efficient technologies more accessible and appealing to ship owners. A baseline emissions level is determined for the vessels prior to the application of a fuel and carbon emissions-reducing AkzoNobel coating such as Intersleek, and the same data source then determines the emissions savings after the coating’s application. The reduced fuel consumption and emissions is directly tied to the carbon credits that the vessel ultimately receives, resulting in both reduced operating costs and extra income.
This was the first issue of carbon credits under the company’s scheme since it was launched in 2014. AkzoNobel is currently in discussions with the enrolled ship owners regarding the sale and offsetting options for their credits.
On average, each of the 16 vessels included in the first issue achieved savings of just over 1,250 tons of fuel and 4,000 tons of carbon dioxide per year. AkzoNobel expects the numbers to increase as more vessels continue to enrol in the scheme.
“We have long known that our Intersleek coatings can contribute to reducing carbon emissions from the shipping industry,” said Intersleek Business Manager Trevor Solomon, who manages the carbon credits program. “With the award of the first carbon credits, we now have independent validation and verification of those fuel and emission savings by respected auditors and The Gold Standard Foundation.”
Currently, over 4,500 vessels are using Intersleek. Based on the average 10 percent carbon dioxide savings recorded in this first carbon credits issue, the company estimates that the full fleet’s emissions reduction is around 17 million tons of carbon dioxide per year. That figure represents around 1.5 percent of the global emissions from shipping, as estimated by the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO’s) Third Greenhouse Gas Study.
“With the carbon credits program, we are demonstrating leadership and innovation in driving sustainability," Wezenbeek said. AkzoNobel is also a participant in wider collaborative sustainability efforts in the shipping sector, including the BICEPS (Boosting Initiatives for Collaborative Emission-reduction with the Power of Shippers) network and the Sustainable Shipping Initiative (SSI).
AkzoNobel coatings were also in the news earlier this month, when KLM Royal Dutch Airlines specified AkzoNobel’s new base coat and clear coat system for its fleet of Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners. The system reportedly required 15 percent less paint, offering a potential weight reduction and helping to lower fuel costs.