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CMA CGM to dedicate LNG powered containerships to the US market

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LNG Industry,

Rodolphe Saadé, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the CMA CGM Group, a world leader in shipping and logistics, has announced he would dedicate six LNG powered containerships to the US market as part of the Group’s ongoing efforts to improve air quality and drive forward the energy transition of the shipping industry. Rodolphe Saadé made the announcement at the opening session of TPM, the premiere conference for the trans-Pacific and global container shipping and logistics community.

Six 15 000-TEU LNG-powered vessels to call the US

The first of these new vessels will be delivered in October 2021, and all ships will be fully operational by the end of 2022. The six 15 000 TEU vessels will be deployed on CMA CGM’s Pearl River Express (PRX) line, which sails from China to the Port of Los Angeles. The CMA CGM Group is currently operating 12 LNG-powered containerships, a fleet that will grow to 32 containerships of various sizes by 2022. This technology is one of the first steps towards achieving CMA CGM Group’s ambitious 2050 objective of carbon neutrality.

An enhanced service offering to CMA CGM’s US customers to reduce their environmental impact

As a customer-centric Group, CMA CGM is sharing its energy transition solutions for shipping and providing its customers with effective solutions with these six 15,000-TEU LNG-powered vessels. US customers will be able to choose to transport their goods using LNG, a new technology that helps to preserve air quality by eliminating almost all atmospheric pollutants.

Recently, the Group also introduced ACT with CMA CGM+, a set of services designed to allow customers to analyse, reduce and offset their environmental impact. CMA CGM will continue to incorporate the latest advanced technologies to serve the needs of its customers, in the US and globally, while ensuring every aspect of its business is operating in the most sustainable way possible.

Alongside the development of new and agile solutions to answer its customers’ needs, the CMA CGM Group is committed to accompanying local communities through the creation of jobs, partnerships for the emergence of innovative technologies as well as philanthropic endeavours.

LNG, a visionary decision aimed at preserving air quality and driving the energy transition

In November 2017, Rodolphe Saadé made the visionary decision to order nine 23 000 TEU vessels with an LNG power supply, a first in the history of the shipping industry for vessels of this size. LNG is currently the state-of-the-art industry solution for preserving air quality. It delivers a reduction of 99% in sulfur dioxide, 91% in particulate matter emissions and 92% in nitrogen oxide emissions, far surpassing the requirements of current regulations. LNG also provides an initial response to the challenge of tackling climate change. An LNG-powered vessel emits up to 20% less CO2 than fuel-powered systems.

Moving toward a zero-carbon future

Time is of the essence for addressing, now more than ever, the impact of climate change. The CMA CGM Group has always considered its business performance as intrinsically linked to its social and environmental performance. It is actively implementing measures to accelerate the industry’s energy transition and is significantly investing in research and development to design the clean vessels of the future. CMA CGM also continues to heavily invest in alternative solutions such as wind-assisted propulsion, hydrogen engines and green fuels. In 2019, the Group became the world’s first shipping company to successfully test a biofuel comprising 20% recycled plant oil and forestry waste. It has pledged that alternative fuels will cover at least 10% of its consumption by 2023.

CMA CGM, a world leader committed for many years to the protection of the environment

For several years, CMA CGM has been firmly committed to protecting the environment and marine biodiversity, as well as to reducing its carbon footprint. To this end, the Group has made several game-changing decisions:

  • Not using Northern Sea routes, a key policy to protect the Arctic’s fragile and unique ecosystems.
  • Reducing the speed of its vessels in certain areas that serve as key breeding grounds for whales and marine mammals, such as the eastern seaboard of the US and Canada, where CMA CGM’s ships cut their speed to 10 knots to avoid the risk of collision.
  • Adding to its ships of an approved ballast water treatment system, which clears the discharged water of any living organisms that may harm marine life.
  • Developing various cutting-edge and environmentally friendly technologies to raise its fleet’s efficiency and cut energy consumption: reprofiled bow shapes to achieve a better hydrodynamic performance, as well as propeller and engine innovations to cut CO2 emissions and oil and fuel consumption.
  • Initiating and forming an international coalition of 14 global companies to advance concrete solutions to reduce the environmental footprint of transports and logistics through the development of new energy sources.

Rodolphe Saadé said, “The deployment of six LNG-powered containerships of 15 000 TEU will go along with the development of the US economy in a sustainable manner. It is a strong signal in favour of the environment. The US is strategic for the economic exchanges and for CMA CGM: 2021 will definitely be marked by the strengthening of the ties that have already united us for a long time. We deeply believe in the strengths of the American economy and we’re eager to foster its responsible growth.”

At the opening session of TPM 2021, Rodolphe Saadé reiterated the full commitment of the CMA CGM Group to its customers and to local communities in the US through:

  • The implementation of agile solutions to support customers, their activities and their development in these exceptional times.
  • The importance of listening to customers’ needs and expectations and offering them a good and reliable service.
  • The creation of 400 jobs in Virginia where the Group has its US head office. Currently, CMA CGM employs 12 000 people in the US.
  • The development of ZEBOX U.S.A., an innovation hub, to support start-ups in the development of disruptive solutions in transportation, logistics, mobilities and industry 4.0.

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