Shipping company Maersk has announced a new set of emissions targets, which it expects to align the company with the net zero criteria of the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) pathway to limit global warming to 1.5°C. They include a societal commitment to act now and drive material impact in this decade, and a commitment to deliver net zero supply chains to customers by 2040.

The targets go beyond previous efforts to reduce emissions related to the ocean fleet as they cover all direct and indirect emissions across the entire Maersk business.

Soren Skou, CEO of Maersk, said: “As a global provider of end-to-end logistics services across all transport modes, it is a strategic imperative for Maersk to extend our net zero ambition to the total footprint of the business. The science is clear, we must act now to deliver significant progress in this decade. These very ambitious targets mark our commitment to society and to the many customers who call for net zero supply chains.”

It is also hoped that tangible near-term targets for 2030 will ensure significant progress on curbing direct Maersk emissions already in this decade. These include a 50 per cent reduction in emissions per transported container in the Maersk Ocean fleet, and a 70 per cent reduction in absolute emissions from fully controlled terminals. Depending on growth in the ocean business, this could lead to absolute emissions reductions of between 35 per cent and 50 per cent from a 2020 baseline.

By implementing recommendations from the SBTi, Marsek hope to build a portfolio of natural climate solutions that will results in around five million tonnes of CO2 savings per year by 2030.

To maximise progress towards net zero supply chains in 2040, Maersk are also introducing ambitious 2030 targets for a range of green product offerings, adding to solutions including their Emissions Dashboard and ECO Delivery. The aim is to reinforce Maersk as an industry leading provider of green supply chain solutions, and cover ocean, air, contract logistics and cold chain businesses. The products will utilise green technologies and solutions to ensure that they provide real emissions reductions within the supply chain.

Covering indirect emissions means the targets also address emissions from, for example, inland transport services and vessel building, which are provided by third party suppliers. Tackling this challenge will require extensive data insights and close collaboration with local and regional suppliers of products and services across the Maersk business footprint.

Henriette Hallberg Thygesen, CEO of fleet and strategic brands, Maersk, said: “Our updated targets and accelerated timelines reflect a very challenging, yet viable pathway to net zero which is driven by advances in technology and solutions. What is needed is a rapid scale-up which we will strive to achieve in close collaboration with customers and suppliers across the entire supply chain.”

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