23 December, 2021

Australian Newsletter - Issue 710

Green Corridors: A Lane for Zero-Carbon Shipping
Source: Martin Joerss, Arjen Kersing, Andrew Kramer, Matt Stone and Detlev Mohr (McKinsey Sustainability)

Zero-emission fuels and vessels will need to start being deployed at scale over the next decade to achieve full decarbonization of the shipping sector by 2050. This ambitious goal could be catalyzed by green corridors.

The shipping sector is the lifeblood of global trade, accounting for approximately 80 percent of all trade, with further growth expected. The sector also represents about 3 percent of total CO2 emissions—an amount that, if unchecked, could rise by as much as half by 2050. FULL STORY

Tool to Help Shipping Lines Calculate Co2 Emissions
Source: The Maritime Executive

A decade of mandatory energy efficiency measures for ships

Over ten years have passed since the International Maritime Organization (IMO) first set international mandatory measures for improving ships' energy efficiency aimed at cutting down Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions. The package of measures combined with implementation support set shipping on the path to decarbonization.  During this timeframe, the Sea Cargo Charter also joined in on the issue of controlling air pollution from ships by establishing a framework for aligning chartering activities with responsible environmental behaviour. FULL STORY

Peak Oil & Coal Demand means Peak Shipping Demand too
Source: Michael Barnard (CleanTechnica)

The world is unlikely to see a return to pre-COVID-19 levels of shipping, projecting a minor peak in roughly 2030, and then a decline before it flattens out again.

In recent months I’ve been looking at the hard-to-decarbonize segments of the transportation industry. My assertion for years has been that all ground transportation will electrify with grid- and battery-electric, that short- and medium-haul aviation would be completely viable to electrify by 2100, and that short- and medium-haul water shipping would electrify as well. But what did that mean for long-haul aviation and shipping? My assessment in 2017 was that roughly 3-4% of the total transportation fuel cycle would not be easy to electrify, and that other fuels would be required. FULL STORY 

Dry Freight Weekly Report
Source: Freight Investor Solutions

As the Christmas period approaches, the Dry Freight markets are finishing the year on a negative footing, with little physical or sentimental reason the drag it out of a downward trajectory.

Further dated futures into Q2 onwards do seem to have a more positive outlook, but the heavily discounted nature of Q1 period seems to indicate that not only is the year done, but also 2022 may start on a somewhat negative front. We wish you a happy festive period! At the beginning of the week the physical market was also under huge pressure as the Atlantic routes had rates slashed, and rumours of weaker fixing in the Pacific. This left many tilting towards the negative side sentiment wise with the run into Christmas upon us. FULL STORY

Oil Prices Steady as Omicron Caution Lingers
Source: Mohi Narayan and Sonali Paul (Reuters)

Oil prices were steady on Wednesday as fears of tight supply were offset by COVID-19 concerns after Singapore suspended quarantine-free travel and Australia renewed its vaccination push due to a surge in Omicron variant cases.

U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures edged up 37 cents, or 0.55%, to $71.49 a barrel at 1050 GMT after jumping 3.7% on Tuesday. Brent crude futures rose 28 cents, or 0.40%, to $74.26 a barrel after gaining 3.4% in the last session. “The bias is positive over optimistic updates from vaccine maker Moderna … however the upside looks limited as investors seem to be exercising caution over Omicron-related restrictions,” said Ajay Kedia, director at Kedia Commodities in Mumbai. FULL STORY

The Lucky Country made some if its Own Luck in 2021
Source: Michael Shoebridge (The Strategist)

Australia is ending the year in much better shape than we ended 2020.

That’s so even though our region is still a dangerous place, and an aggressive China under Xi Jinping continues to be the primary driver of this nasty circumstance. Covid-19 too remains a changeable, unpredictable threat to the health and social functioning of the world. Last year ended with these two nasty truths providing some intrusive and damaging effects for Australia. Back then, we felt more lonely, with less of a plan, than we do now. It’s worth noticing that a lot has changed in a good way over 2021: on the pandemic, with the economy, and in big strategic and security ways. FULL STORY

Resource Exports Tipped to Hit Record High
Source: Andrew Brown (Northern Beaches Review)

Australian energy and resource exports are forecast to reach record levels this financial year, driven by high commodity prices and a weaker Australian dollar.

The latest outlook in the Resources and Energy Quarterly published for the December quarter predicts exports will reach $379 billion during 2021/22. Despite the impacts to the economy of COVID-19, the resources and energy export sector is expected to be up 22 per cent on the previous record of $310 billion set during the previous financial year. While iron ore prices have fallen, a stronger result for base metals, coal and LNG has been able to offset it. The forecast also predicted coal and LNG prices to remain high going forward due to strong demand and ongoing shortages for the commodities.  FULL STORY

Major Projects Pipeline soon to Flow Again
Source: Henry Ballard (Australian Mining)

Australia’s resources and energy sector will see jobs and projects abound in the coming years, with the committed pipeline’s value increasing 24 per cent in the 2021 major projects report.

According to the report, the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources counted 79 committed projects in 2021 with a combined worth of $54.3 billion. A total of 15 projects with a combined worth of $10.1 billion were completed in 2021, while a further 273 projects were publicly announced or reached the feasibility stage. The committed jobs pipeline is expected to create about 25,100 construction jobs and 8300 ongoing jobs, according to the report. FULL STORY

Meat Export Industry says Australia's Reputation Damaged by Port Strikes
Source: David Claughton and Lucy Thackray (ABC Rural)

Meat exporters are hoping Australia's long-running port dispute will be over soon, but it may be too late to save Australia's reputation as a reliable exporter.

Delays due to strike action at ports around the country have meant containers with products due in overseas markets in time for Christmas have not arrived and also resulted in massive increases in costs and charges. The dispute has affected importers and exporters all over Australia for more than a year and in October it resulted in heavy machinery required in WA being diverted to the east coast just as the state was about to start a record harvest. FULL STORY

Significant Rain Event to Kick Off Boxing Day
Source: Penelope Arthur (Farmonline)

It's beginning to look a lot like a wet Christmas for many parts of Australia - at least from Boxing Day onwards.

The Bureau of Meteorology is forecasting rain events to impact most of Northern Australia, Southern and South East Queensland and Northern NSW with totals of up to 200mm likely in some areas. Meanwhile, southern WA looks set to swelter through the festive period, with Perth forecast to reach 42 degrees on Christmas Day. BOM senior forecaster Jackson Brown said there were two main areas of wet weather to monitor from about Boxing Day. FULL STORY

Woodside, Osaka Gas, and Keppel, Team Up for Liquid Hydrogen
Source: Damon Evans (Energy Voice)

Australia’s Woodside is studying the technical and commercial feasibility of a liquid hydrogen supply chain from Western Australia to Singapore and potentially Japan. 

Australia’s Woodside (ASX:WPL) is studying the technical and commercial feasibility of a liquid hydrogen supply chain from Western Australia to Singapore and potentially Japan. Woodside is partnering with Singapore’s Keppel Data Centres, Japan’s Osaka Gas business division in Singapore, as well as Singaporean city-gas distributor City-OG Gas Energy Services, following a memorandum of understanding signed between the companies. FULL STORY

Patrick Terminals’ Christmas Sackings at Melbourne Port Condemned
Source: MUA

Patrick Terminals, in the week before Christmas, have indicated they plan to sack a number of hard working Team Leaders from their Melbourne stevedoring workforce.

This occurs in the midst of a union-led ceasefire of hostilities and a promise earlier this month by the Union’s National Secretary Paddy Crumlin that there would no industrial action during the Christmas season. “Patrick Terminals stand condemned for this opportunistic act of corporate bastardry,” said MUA Assistant National Secretary, Jamie Newlyn. The Maritime Union has been negotiating with Patrick Terminals for almost two years, asking them to settle an employment agreement that both parties can be happy with. FULL STORY

Commodity Prices Boost Queensland Economic Outlook
Source: Michael Philipps (Australian Mining)

Queensland’s coal exports have delivered an extra $2.9 billion in royalties to the state’s budget, according to its mid-financial year update.

According to Treasurer Cameron Dick, Queensland has avoided the long lockdowns that have occurred in other states, and the latest budget update demonstrates the marked improvement in its economic performance since the budget in June. Dick said the $8 billion increase in revenues was driven in part by a one-off surge in the value of Queensland’s coal exports. FULL STORY

Crewman Admits Leaving Vessel's Bridge Before Collision Outside Lyttelton Harbour
Source: David Clarkson (NZ Herald)

A fishing boat crewman who had left the bridge unattended when the vessel collided with a bulk carrier outside the Lyttelton Heads has admitted a charge under the Maritime Transport Act.

Christopher Anderson, who had been employed by the fishing company for 12 years, admitted the charge of causing unnecessary danger or risk to the Leila Jo fishing boat, and the bulk carrier, and the people on board, in the incident on January 12, 2020. Christchurch District Court Judge Quentin Hix remanded him for sentencing on March 2, but did not call for any reports. Defence counsel Jeff McCall and Maritime New Zealand have agreed that only a fine is needed. FULL STORY

Will Omicron Affect My Cruise? How Cruise Lines are Adjusting to the New Variant
Source: Erica Silverstein (The Points Guy)

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The cruise industry is once again making headlines for onboard outbreaks of COVID-19 and ships being turned away from port due to sick passengers and crew. This week, Royal Caribbean’s Symphony of the Seas saw 48 passengers and crew members test positive for COVID-19 … FULL STORY

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