February 14 ------ French shipping giant CMA CGM is joining forces with Energy Observer within a project focusing on testing the potential of hydrogen as a marine fuel. Energy Observer, formerly a legendary race boat, is embarking on a world round trip using hydrogen as fuel. CMA CGM said it would contribute its industrial expertise to this floating lab, in order to promote the use of hydrogen as a zero-emission fuel source for the shipping industry in the years to come. “Our partnership deals with the development of cleaner and more sustainable energies to eliminate CO2 emissions, greenhouse gases and air pollutants. It aims to experiment, test and develop energy solutions based on hydrogen, solar, tidal and wind power,” CMA CGM said announcing the partnership. The green hydrogen used by Energy Observer is made from seawater using on-board renewable sources of electricity (solar, wind and hydropower).
As explained, producing and burning hydrogen does not result in any greenhouse gas or fine particle emissions. Under the project, CMA CGM and Energy Observer R&D experts will pool their expertise and knowledge to develop technological solutions capable of limiting the environmental impact of shipping. The shipping major said that its mobilization will make possible the industrialization of new concrete energy solutions tested on board this floating smart grid. “The Energy Observer village will be made from containers converted and transported by CMA CGM with the large-scale operational support from the whole CMA CGM network around the world. It will travel the globe, presenting the latest technological innovations to the largest possible number of people and raising awareness about ecological transition issues among all audiences,” CMA CGM said.
Between 2005 and 2015, CMA CGMA reduced its CO2 emissions per container transported by 50%, and it has set a target of reducing it by a further 30% between 2015 and 2025. The liner has made a commitment to the use of liquefied natural gas (LNG) for large-capacity vessels and is testing biofuel made from recycled vegetable oils and forest residues as part of its decarbonization efforts. “CMA CGM is joining forces with Energy Observer to accelerate the development of tomorrow’s energy solutions, particularly hydrogen. Our partnership will mobilize all of CMA CGM’s know-how. Our teams of engineers and R&D experts are already working and our network around the world will be strongly mobilized to ensure the logistical support of Energy Observer’s worldwide ports of call,” Tanya Saadé Zeenny, Executive Officer of the CMA CGM Group, said. “With CMA CGM’s huge experience in the shipping industry, our respective engineers and our technology partners, we have every chance of achieving our goals, which are ambitious but increasingly realistic,” Victorien Erussard, Energy Observer’s Founder and Captain, added.