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Marking Maritime World Day, Secretary-General Says Shipping, Crucial in Achieving Sustainable Development Goals, Must Become Zero-Emission Vessels

Following are UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ message for the World Maritime Day, under the theme “New Technologies for Greener Shipping”, observed on 29 September:

Maritime transport represents more than 80 per cent of global trade.  The war in Ukraine — and the Black Sea Grain Initiative — have reminded us of the vital role of shipping in feeding the world.

The theme of this year’s World Maritime Day, "New Technologies for Greener Shipping", highlights the need for sustainable shipping solutions that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, protect the environment and align with the 1.5°C goal of the Paris Agreement on climate change.

The maritime sector must accelerate its voyage to decarbonization.  Without concerted action, emissions from shipping are projected to grow considerably without action.  Governments and private companies need to work together to harness innovative technologies such as digitalization and automation and foster a just transition that includes developing countries and promotes renewable energy and alternative fuels.

The vessels to be deployed in this decade will determine whether the shipping sector achieves net zero emissions by 2050.  Smarter and greener zero‑emission ships must become the default choice and commercially available for all by 2030.

As shipping continues to connect humanity, it must play an essential part in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and building a fair and prosperous future for people and planet.

For information media. Not an official record.