Biofuel test on Maersk line to India

December 16, 2011

Algae-based biofuel is being tested by shipping giant Maersk Line between Europe and India. The importance of cutting emissions from global shipping as more vigorous calls for carbon tax on the industry grow takes on a greater significance.

The company says blends of fuels with a bio-content from between seven and 100 percent will be tested in an auxiliary engine of the container Maersk Kalmar. The 6,500 mile journey will use up to 30 tonnes of biofuel all of which will be monitored and measured for efficiency and emissions.

Maersk said the tests should show it the optimal blend of distillate and biofuel that will meet the International Maritime Organisation's forthcoming emissions regulations.

Under a deal agreed at the IMO earlier this year, shipping companies must consider methods to improve the fuel efficiency of vessels, such as slower speeds, while new vessels will have to meet rising minimum efficiency standards from 2015.