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Anglo’s tenth emission-cutting ship contributing to cleaner, greener maritime industry

Cleaner-fuelled Anglo ship built by Shanghai shipbuilder.

Cleaner-fuelled Anglo ship built by Shanghai shipbuilder.

28th February 2024

By: Martin Creamer

Creamer Media Editor

     

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JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – The contribution of diversified mining company Anglo American to a cleaner, greener maritime industry is highlighted by this week’s delivery of the last of ten emission-cutting ships.

The maiden voyage of the Ubuntu Liberty vessel from China to South Africa will mark the successful on-time transfer of all ten ships built over the last three years by Shanghai Waigaoqiao Shipbuilding, located along the mouth of China’s Yangtze river.

The final vessel of the Ubuntu fleet is on its way to Saldanha Bay to collect iron-ore from South Africa’s high-quality-producing Kumba operations in the Northern Cape, a repeat of what the first Ubuntu Harmony vessel did a year ago.

The fleet emits 35% less carbon dioxide into the air than ships fuelled by conventional marine oil fuel.

Customers are showing keen interest in accessing Ubuntu freight, which Anglo marketing business CEO Matt Walker says in a Johannesburg Stock Exchange announcement demonstrates growing recognition of the value of sustainable shipping as part of a more sustainable supply chain that end consumers increasingly expect.

Shanghai Waigaoqiao has delivered the fleet on time, on budget and with a zero-safety-incident record.

The Ubuntu fleet is a key component of Anglo's ambition to achieve carbon-neutrality for its controlled ocean freight by 2040, aligning with Anglo's sustainable mining plan commitment to carbon neutral operations across its mines by the same year. The LNG dual-fuelled vessels offer an estimated 35% reduction in emissions compared to ships fuelled by conventional marine oil fuel and are the most efficient vessels of their type today.

Since the first liquefied natural gas (LNG) dual-fuelled new-build ship was loaded, more than 6.4-million tonnes of iron-ore and steelmaking coal across global shipping routes.

Additionally, the fleet has conducted 30-plus refuelling stops for LNG in locations such as Singapore and Malaysia, amid the shipping industry being responsible for some 3% of the world's greenhouse gas emissions.

GREEN HYDROGEN

As reported by Mining Weekly last year, Anglo has established a framework of initiatives for the decarbonisation of its maritime activities, including energy-saving devices fitted to existing vessels, the use of voyage optimisation software, and a focus on exploring, trialling and adopting alternative, sustainable fuel options, including sustainable biofuel, green methanol and ammonia, and – further down the line – green hydrogen.

The use of LNG is also expected to lead to a reduction of nitrogen oxides and particulate matter from vessel exhausts, while new technology also eliminates the release of unburnt methane.

The dual-fuelled Capesize+ fleet is part of an ambition to achieve carbon neutrality for controlled ocean freight by 2040, with an interim target to reduce emissions from these activities by 30% by 2030. This is all part of a wider ambition to halve Scope 3 emissions by 2040.

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter

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