Industry and authorities join forces to solve global enforcement challenge with the help of students
04-10-2016 11:00

The Technical University of Denmark (DTU), Maersk, The Boeing Company, the Danish Maritime Authority and the Danish Environmental Protection Agency have joined forces to solve the global sulphur enforcement challenge.

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With support from the Danish Maritime Fund, a student competition will be held at DTU in the spring of 2017. The goal is to find efficient enforcement solutions for the authorities to use on the high seas when the coming global IMO sulphur regulations enter into force.

The multifaceted group of organizations behind this project have come together with one common goal – to find an efficient enforcement method. Each partner represents different types of expertise that can, if combined, contribute to guiding the participating students on their path to inventing effective methods for enforcing the international sulphur regulations on the high seas.

Senior Adviser from the Danish Maritime Authority, Peter Krog-Meyer, says:
“It is challenging to detect what type of fuel is being used by ships on the high seas. Nonetheless, this is what maritime and environmental authorities all over the world will have to do when a new and stricter global limit on sulphur emissions from ships is introduced. To overcome this challenge, we are very happy to have a partnership with large, international companies and DTU to discover new and better enforcement methods.”

Head of Department at the Danish Environmental Protection Agency, Sara Røpke, says:
“As the competent Danish authority of sulphur regulation and enforcement, we are very committed to finding efficient methods for enforcement in order to ensure the intended effect of the regulation. We have already launched a number of initiatives aiming at effective implementation of the sulphur regulation. In line with that, we welcome this partnership and look very much forward to seeing the results next spring.”

The idea for a student competition was hatched by the Boeing Company. Previous student competitions held in the United States showed that the solutions the student came up with were surprisingly creative, innovative and useful. One of the business ideas launched by the student group from the last competition proposed to use Boeing’s patents to filter out the dangerous particulate matter from coal-fired power plant emissions, while extracting greenhouse gases for productive uses. It is the first time this kind of competition will be focused on emissions from ships.

Logan Jones, Director, Boeing Ventures, says:
“This innovative, powerful partnership model reflects on just how hard a problem this is to solve. It takes creativity and collaboration from students, maritime authorities, the university, and industry to help address one of the most pressing issues facing the global shipping industry. This event will show just how much better we can be when we work together focused on a common goal.”

Maersk is also contributing to the project with the company’s massive expertise within the shipping industry. Along with other likeminded ship owners in Trident Alliance, Maersk is already working actively to secure a level playing field when sulphur regulations enters into force on the high sea. Considering the significant cost difference between high sulphur and compliant low sulphur fuels, there is a real need for effective enforcement on a global scale.

Aslak Ross, Head of Marine Standards from Maersk Line says:
“There are currently no solutions to ensure enforcement of the regulation on high sea. We need robust enforcement solutions in place prior to global emissions regulations entering into force. This is equally important for the authorities and the industry to meet the objective of the regulation and to maintain a level playing field. Maersk are pleased to be part of this work group working towards solving this crucial global enforcement challenge.”

The competition will be held at DTU during the spring of 2017. A panel of judges consisting of participants from The European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA), Danish Maritime Authority (DMA), The Danish Environmental Protection Agency (Danish EPA), The Technical University of Denmark (DTU), Maersk and Boeing will select the best solution, and the winners will be revealed at an award ceremony hosted by DTU in May 2017.

Marianne Thellersen, Senior Vice President - Innovation and Entrepreneurship, from DTU says:
”Need-driven innovation has a high priority in the educational system at DTU. When companies such as Maersk and Boeing interact with students by bringing real industry challenges in play, they get new solutions and perspectives to integrate and implement in their companies, but they also get access to a platform from which recruitment of future employees can take place. These student competitions, which DTU have been doing in many forms, bring great value to our students as well; they strengthen their developer skills and get a mind-set that will influence a whole new generation of engineers.” 



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