En route to net zero

Canada’s inland waterways and coasts are essential to our country’s supply chain resiliency — but did you know that moving more on marine will also move us faster towards our net zero carbon emissions goals?
Ship sailing in Thousand Islands

Marine is Canada’s greenest mode of transport

Leadership in Marine Sustainability

Canada’s hometown fleet keeps dropping its carbon weight

In less than 10 years (2008 to 2017), Chamber of Marine Commerce’s Canadian ship operator members reduced their total carbon emissions by more than 19 per cent, investing billions in eco ships and alternative fuels.  Learn how Canadian ship operators are stepping up their climate solutions. 

Canadian Green Shipping Corridor

To continue on a path towards net zero, CMC members are eager to partner with the Canadian federal government, as well as with research facilities, to explore the potential for a new and innovative Canadian Green Shipping Corridor in the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence waterway.

  • A dedicated port-to-port route to showcase and test the best of new green technologies, infrastructure and policies — while establishing benchmarks and measuring carbon reduction progress.
  • Voluntary, multi-stakeholder initiative involving ship operators, ports, the St. Lawrence Seaway, stevedores and marine suppliers with a role to play in reducing carbon emissions.
  • Organized by the Chamber of Marine Commerce and initially established through a Memorandum of Understanding laying out agreed principles and objectives.

Working with Government

A Great Lakes ship’s lifespan is typically 30 years, and currently there is no viable alternative fuel to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050. The necessary R&D, regulatory framework adapted to Canadian realities, and the implementation of Canadian supply chains for alternative energy sources must all be in place within 10 years.

Governments can work alongside industry to innovate, invest and create smart solutions to help reduce the future impacts of climate change:

  • The success of a green corridor depends on taking a “Made in Canada” federal government alternative compliance approach to tracking carbon emission reductions from domestic ships that account for short sea shipping trading patterns and the unique Canadian ship designs particular to operating in the Great Lakes St. Lawrence region and related waters.
  • Expansion of current technologies like shore power at ports, or transitional fuels (LNG, biofuel) require more investment and supportive government policy. For example, second-generation marine biofuel costs 1.5 to 2 times more than marine diesel and is in limited supply. Sufficient supply of biofuel at more port locations, government tax incentives, and supportive policy are needed to help establish a viable market.
  • Dedicated government funds, specifically targeted towards infrastructure, digitalization, adaptive and mitigation measures, that lead to the reduction of GHGs, climate resiliency and increased efficiency of the supply chain.
  • Net zero “future fuels” will require new ship propulsion technology, vessel/port storage, supply and distribution networks, safety and training protocols. Collaboration with academia and government will be imperative to do more R&D now around future fuels like hydrogen, methanol, or ammonia to determine feasibility and work on ship trials based on availability, accessibility, costs, ease and social licence.