In this chapter we explore the energy efficiency drive, examine the options available to shipping, and consider how these efficiency measures might affect the sea transport options for SIDS.
Key Themes: Technology – Efficiency – Alternative Fuels – Operational Examples
International shipping is undergoing an unprecedented and increasing search for energy efficiency and reducing its reliance on fossil fuels. A range of technological innovations have been tried and tested in the race to improve shipping efficiency. However, most analysts have identified a change in operational measures, such as slow-steaming, route optimization, or increased economies of scale as the key to achieving real gains in the near and medium future. Much of the innovation is happening at the large-scale and new asset end of the industry. How this might be translated for smaller and older vessels, such as those serving the needs of small islands and large developing countries, has not yet received sufficient attention or priority. The global trend towards increased technological and operational efficiency is likely to see SIDS further marginalised.