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The future of sustainable fuel sources in transportation - Transitional fuels most likely to be used in the next three to five years

Outcome: Nearly half of the vessel owners, charterers and managers who answered our survey cited dual fuel and LNG as the most likely to be used as a transitional fuel in the next three to five years.

The shipping sector faces a tremendous challenge as it seeks to meet ambitious decarbonization targets. However, nobody expects the sector to reduce carbon emissions by 80% overnight. Improvements will be incremental as technology, fuels and best practices gradually develop.

For now, transitional fuels are an important piece of the decarbonization jigsaw but may recede over the coming decades as even cleaner alternatives develop. More than half of the respondents to our survey predict dual fuel or LNG will be the most common transitional fuel used in the industry in the medium. This is reflected in new-build orders.

When looking at the survey results, it is important to remember that not every sector in the industry is likely to embrace the same approach to transitional fuels. For example, an offshore supply vessel may look at very different transitional fuel arrangements to a tanker, cargo vessel or passenger ferry. 

Survey results: This bar chart shows that 53% of respondents selected Dual fuel - a mixture between sustainable and non-sustainable energy resources as the most likely to be used as a transitional fuel in the next three to five years, followed by LNG (40%), biomass derived: fuel (23%), electricity from renewable sources (wind/hydro/solar/geothermal/wave) (20%), biomass derived: gas (15%), synthetic fossil fuel: e-methanol (15%), other (15%), biomass derived: LNG (13%), hydrogen and synthetic non-carbon: hydrogen (13%), hydrogen and synthetic non-carbon: ammonia (8%) and synthetic fossil fuel: e-methane (8%). Please note that respondents were able to select more than one option.


transportation, esg, decarbonization