The ‘Green’ Passage Towards Maritime Decarbonisation

With the maritime industry turning to lower carbon fuels and energy-efficient technologies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the Masterclass in Maritime Decarbonisation offered by SIT steers knowledge acquisition in this direction.

Course Insights
30 Apr 2024

Sustainability, Transport Engineering


The International Maritime Organization is championing a comprehensive targeted approach to decarbonising shipping practices, ensuring that no one is left behind in the global transition towards zero emissions shipping. (Photo: Shutterstock)

Singapore has set ambitious targets to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from shipping. The Maritime Singapore Decarbonisation Blueprint aims for a 15% reduction in emissions by 2030 and a 50% reduction by 2050, compared to 2021 levels.

“The shipping industry is evolving progressively to meet the International Maritime Organization’s long-term target of reducing annual GHG emissions from international shipping by at least half by 2050 compared to 2008 levels. The use of alternative fuels and adoption of energy-efficient technologies is on the rise. There is a need to equip stakeholders in the value chain with knowledge on how to reduce their carbon emissions and drive towards more sustainable shipping,” said Dr Ang Joo Hock, President of the Society of Naval Architects & Marine Engineers Singapore (SNAMES).

Ms Dilys Tan is one such maritime professional, spurred by the surge in maritime decarbonisation efforts, to upskill herself through the Masterclass on Maritime Decarbonisation offered by SITLEARN, the Singapore Institute of Technology's  (SIT) Lifelong Learning Division, last year. The two-day Masterclass is conducted in collaboration with SNAMES and the Singapore Shipping Association (SSA).

Dilys, who works for a leading independent marine fuel supplier, Peninsula Petroleum Far East Pte Ltd, said she first encountered the term three years ago when maritime decarbonisation was a fledgling concept.

Keeping Abreast of Developments

As a supply manager in the ship bunker industry, Dilys is heavily involved in procuring the best fuels for her clients, according to their needs.

Seeing first-hand how her work has changed in the past year, with more customers requesting alternative fuels such as Biofuel and Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) stems, Dilys wanted to move quickly to learn more about maritime decarbonisation, “especially because accelerated climate change has also made it more urgent to decarbonise quicker than initially anticipated,” she added.

The Masterclass was crucial for Dilys to understand the needs of her clients better.  


Dilys Tan from Peninsula Petroleum Far East Pte Ltd attended the two-day Masterclass on Maritime Decarbonisation in July 2023. (Photo: Dilys Tan)

The course introduced the latest decarbonisation technologies, their benefits and limitations, and future trends in decarbonisation – concepts that Dilys found very helpful in aiding her decision-making at work.

“Learning about the decarbonisation technologies and alternative fuels – especially with hard data and concrete real-world examples – filled the knowledge gaps and helped me understand the viability of different fuels for different bunkers,” Dilys shared.

“Ultimately, the knowledge gained from the course gave me greater confidence to deal with my clients and speak to them about alternative fuels, as I was able to steer conversations in the right direction to provide them with solutions.”

Diving Deep into Learning

One of the things Dilys particularly appreciated was the comprehensive content presented to her in the Masterclass, which she found to be very informative.

The course covers maritime decarbonisation standards and guidelines, operating principles of energy-efficient technologies like ship digital twin, energy storage systems, alternative fuels, and hybrid and future technologies such as fuel cell and nuclear marine propulsion.

Determined to make the most of the material given, Dilys dove right into her folder of data, information, and examples with gusto. “I went home and spent my night reading through it all,” she said. “Of course, it was optional, but I felt it helped me absorb the material more quickly the next day.”

The course is a great one for beginners to attend, in Dilys’ opinion, because the concept of maritime decarbonisation was introduced progressively and built upon by the teaching team.

The 11-member teaching team comprises Associate Professors Wang Xin and Tay Chuan Beng, Assistant Professors Wong Wee Chin and Elsa Feng, as well as industry professionals.

“I’m not a shipping expert by any stretch, so hearing from experts and professionals from all aspects of the industry was very helpful. The different perspectives SIT professors, engineers, consultants, and SNAMES members shared really helped me better understand how decarbonisation is now a crucial part of my work.”

Working Together for a Common Cause

Dilys has a renewed understanding of how her work is crucial in the bigger picture of the industry-wide goal to reduce annual GHG emissions from international shipping by at least half by 2050.


The pioneer cohort of the ‘Masterclass on Maritime Decarbonisation' course held in July 2023. (SIT Photo)

“Seeing ship owners, ship charterers, shipyard engineers, and other maritime professionals come together to learn how we can make a difference in reducing GHG emissions in the shipping industry made me feel a greater sense of purpose,” she shared.

Further details of the Masterclass on Maritime Decarbonisation course can be found on the SITLEARN website.

This article was originally published on SIT's Digital Newsroom.

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SITLEARN is the lifelong learning division of Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT), Singapore's first University of Applied Learning. We focus on providing lifelong learning opportunities for working adults to upgrade their skills and knowledge for the workplace.

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