Maritime Book and Claim System Advances Pilot Study to Support First Movers in Zero-Emissions Shipping

Published — April 17, 2024

RMI and the Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Center for Zero Carbon Shipping further their pilot of the Maritime Book and Claim System through partnership with decarbonization early movers.

RMI and the Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Center for Zero Carbon Shipping (MMMCZCS) will collaborate with the Zero Emission Maritime Buyers Alliance (ZEMBA) and Hapag-Lloyd to pilot a Maritime Book and Claim System for tracking and decoupling greenhouse gas emissions from ocean transport services, which account for 3 percent of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and are anticipated to increase to 5–8 percent of GHG emissions by 2050 if no action is taken.

The maritime sector plays a pivotal role in enabling global trade and accelerating the transition to a low-carbon economy. However, the sector’s decarbonization faces challenges such as high costs and fragmented availability of low-emissions fuels, making voluntary interventions crucial to accelerating progress and mobilizing efforts through the value chain. ZEMBA's inaugural tender represents a significant step in this regard, sending a clear demand signal to the industry to transition to low-and zero-emissions fuels.

ZEMBA and Hapag-Lloyd's involvement in the pilot for developing the Maritime Book and Claim System also underscores their commitment to transparency and accountability in these emissions reduction efforts. This innovative system will provide stakeholders with the necessary tools to track verified emissions intensities of ocean transport services, enhancing trust and confidence in the market.

“Market-based interventions such as book and claim are a powerful decarbonization tool, especially in the early stages of establishing a differentiated market,” said Aparajit Pandey, principal and shipping decarbonization lead at RMI. “The Maritime Book and Claim System in conjunction with efforts like ZEMBA’s tender will allow cargo owners to use their purchasing power to advance low-emissions ocean transportation solutions in a transparent, credible manner.”

ZEMBA’s inaugural tender process demonstrates that cargo owners are willing to pay more for premium, zero-emissions shipping services, but are struggling to access those fuels at the scale required for commercial deployment. The Maritime Book and Claim System links this demand signal with a credible and transparent chain of custody model. By decoupling fuel attributes from the physical value chain, book and claim enables transactions of a digitalized version. This ensures that cargo owners can make real investments in low-emissions fuels, moving the market from announcements of e-fuel projects to actual investments, deployment, and cost-competitive commercial availability.

"The collaboration with ZEMBA further strengthens the development of a global Maritime Book and Claim System and underlines how important such a system will be to overcome obstacles to accelerate the adoption of low-emissions fuels at scale.” said Frederik Jacobsen, project manager at the Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Center for Zero Carbon Shipping.

The Maritime Book and Claim system registry is currently being tested by decarbonization first movers across shipping segments, including containerships, bulk carriers, and vehicle carriers. The registry will provide attribute and transaction traceability to enhance transparency and system acceptance. RMI and MMMCZCS have partnered with Energy Web Foundation to develop the registry, leveraging their extensive experience in building chain-of-custody models, including the Sustainable Aviation Fuel Registry (SAFc).

“This registry will demonstrate how technology can enhance transparency and confidence in complex and cross-sectoral supply chains,” said Jesse Morris, CEO at Energy Web Foundation. “Having ZEMBA and Hapag-Lloyd in the pilot is a critical step forward in developing a robust and credible system.”

Moving forward, RMI and MMMCZCS remain committed to supporting initiatives like the Maritime Book and Claim system that drive progress towards a low-carbon future. This tender led by ZEMBA is the first leg in a longer voyage, and will require the support and commitment of several actors to increase the options of verified, credible, and low-emissions transport services. We urge stakeholders across the industry to join us in this important journey toward decarbonization.

The Maritime Book and Claim System is expected to go live in Fall, 2024.

Media Inquiries please contact:

Rachel Sarah - Media Relations Lead, RMI
Anders Kongstad - Media Partner, Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller Center for Zero Carbon Shipping