2022-09-28 GENERAL HOUSE

World Maritime Day: ‘New Technologies for Greener Shipping’

World Maritime Day is commemorated every year on the last Thursday of every September. This year it will take place on September 29, 2022. The purpose of this day is to appreciate the importance of maritime industry and the role played by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) in regulating shipping activities. The shipping industry is a vital part of the world’s economy. At any given moment, there are more than fifty thousand merchant ships carrying raw materials and manufactured goods, technology, medicine and food from one continent to another. This accounts for more than eighty per cent of global goods transported by sea. This means millions of people in the industrialized, developed and developing countries rely on the shipping industry for their livelihood.

Pollution is the biggest challenge of maritime shipping. Research shows that commercial ships emit gases which pollute the air. According to experts, the shipping industry consumes three hundred (300) million tons of fuel every year, releasing around three percent of the world’s carbon-dioxide. This contaminates the oceans and jeopardizes the production of seashells and coral reefs. Also, noise produced by ships travelling long distances and harm marine species that rely on sound for their communication. Moreover, oil spills and cargo ships discharges continue to decrease water quality.

World Maritime Day 2022

‘New technologies for greener shipping,’ is the theme for this year’s World Maritime Day. This theme recognizes the power of the shipping industry to protect the maritime environment. The use of renewable and cleaner sources of fuel and innovative advanced technologies in the shipping industry is highly solicited to check the emission of gases. 

Hence, Sinay innovative intelligent digital software tools are capable of monitoring air quality, noise pollution and all types of water quality indicators. These tools can help shipping companies make fast and accurate decisions about how to carry out their activities without endangering the environment. Ships and ports can be equipped with smart alert sensors to help them monitor toxic levels in fuel emissions. With these software, maritime companies can mitigate the effects of shipping on the environment using the right data, support, and management. 

Reflecting on the deteriorating situation of the oceans, Pope Francis laments that carbon dioxide pollution increases the acidification of the oceans and compromises the marine food chain. He equally notes that marine biodiversity and fisheries are in a fragile state due to uncontrolled fishing, while coral reefs are in a state of constant decline due largely to pollution from industrial waste. Regarding this, he points out that human prosperity does not require the compromising of ecological systems. Similarly, Brother Ernesto, in his circular, ‘The homes of Light’ invites us to ‘become ecologically literate’ and alert to the cry of the earth.

Br. Francis Lukong – Director of the Secretariat of Solidarity


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