Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC), the world’s second-biggest container shipping line, has joined CMA CGM and Hapag-Lloyd in announcing it will not use the Northern Sea Route (NSR).
In a statement, MSC said it will instead focus on improving the environmental impact of its current routes as it believes a surge in container traffic in the Arctic could “damage air quality and endanger the biodiversity of untouched marine habitats.”
Furthermore, MSC claims its decision to avoid the NSR is consistent with its broader strategic approach to sustainability.
Diego Aponte, President and CEO, MSC Group, explained the decision: “As a responsible company with a longstanding nautical heritage and passion for the sea, MSC finds the disappearance of Arctic ice to be profoundly disturbing.
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“Every drop in the oceans is precious and our industry should focus its efforts on limiting environmental emissions and protecting the marine environment across existing trade routes.”
To fight climate change, MSC has completed a program to retrofit more than 250 ships in its existing fleet with the latest green technologies, which will cut approximately two million tons of CO2 emissions every year.
The latest and best example of this is the MSC Gulsun, the largest container ship in the world, which began its maiden voyage last month.
The MSC Gulsun has the lowest carbon footprint by design at 7.49 grams of CO2 emissions to move one ton of cargo one nautical mile.