Hello dear reader! Once again, after a long hiatus, this time for testing and finals, I have triumphantly returned to you, ready to engage in stimulating conversation throughout the summer! Seeing as summer is now upon us, with tests either finishing up or done, many of us are now turning to our favorite pastimes such as swimming, biking or simply hanging out with friends. Others may already be looking into summer jobs if they do not have one already. While I enjoy my time here with this company, I will say that it is always entertaining to indulge other interests that make up who I am, one of them is sailing. Yes, dear reader, I entertain your fantasy once again by confessing that I love all things nautical, and as such I for the past few years have dutifully apprenticed on a small vessel during the summers! My time at sea (really a small straight in Washington lol) has been a very entertaining one, and it has taught me how important nautical transport really is! Other than the glittering ocean liners of the passengers, many people don't realize that the merchant navy is incredibly important, making up 90% of our non-bulk cargo trade. Unfortunately, the majority of ships that are ordered today are made to burn crude oil, making one of the greatest used transport systems a major culprit of pollution. Since the shipping industry is invaluable, this poses the question: What are we doing to make the industry more eco-friendly?
Fortunately, the answer is not as difficult as you would think. Thankfully, dear reader, the shipping companies of the world are one of the few who are not focused on keeping combustion fuel. From the point of view of marine fuels, the first types to be of use are marine gas oil (MGO) and marine diesel oil (MDO). These are distillate fuels and used mostly in high and medium-speed engines and gensets. They have a low viscosity and flash point and a lower energy content measured by volume (by the weight they have a higher energy content) than more viscous fuels but are generally cleaner and produce less polluting emissions. While this is good, many companies still find this to be negative on the environment, prompting many to look at biofuels. Created from plant and animal material, the use of biofuel is not yet widely standardized, however many companies are beginning to switch over, with major liner companies looking towards fuel like natural gas.
Overall, it seems like the future of energy in maritime history is on a steady course, dear reader, and with the advent of cruising in a post-pandemic world, it is safe to say that we will continue to see positive change on our vast oceans. Remember, there is always the chance of a better tomorrow. What can you do to make it a reality?