Hoegh Autoliners ASA

04/18/2024 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 04/18/2024 05:10

Increasing focus on sustainability in RoRo shipping

With an increasing focus on sustainability, the leading RoRo shipping companies are introducing more environmentally friendly methods to meet customer demands while preserving the oceans and maritime life. This article will explore some of the most prominent initiatives in RoRo shipping today.

Fuel efficiency and decarbonization

A wide range of technology can now be implemented in both new and already-built vessels to increase their fuel efficiency.

This means that vessels can perform the same level of shipping activities consuming less fuel and, therefore, releasing less carbon emissions into the environment.

For instance, freight transport companies can equip existing vessels with optimized hulls, bulbous bows, and propellers, designed to make the ships more aerodynamic and energy efficient.

Additionally, innovative technology such as air lubrication, cooling, exhaust gas cleaning, slow steaming, and waste heat recovery systems are increasingly utilized in the industry to further reduce fuel consumption.

One of the most important steps towards decarbonization, however, is the use of cleaner fuels in ocean freight logistics.

Many RoRo shipping companies have shifted towards low-sulfur fuels and LNG (liquified natural gas), which can drastically reduce the pollution caused by sulfur dioxide emissions.

Industry leaders are also turning their attention to Biofuel - one of the most environmentally-friendly fuel options available. Derived from sustainable waste oil, Biofuel is virtually sulfur-free and reduces net carbon emissions by 100% from tank to air. Many new build projects are involving enabling the vessels to run on future fuels, such as Ammonia and Methanol. Read more about Höegh Autoliners Aurora Class vessels here.


To further minimize the environmental harm caused by ocean freight activities, biosecurity is a key part of sustainability initiatives in RoRo shipping.

Biosecurity is concerned with the prevention of spreading invasive species and harmful pests to new marine environments. One such measure is BWTS (Ballast Water Treatment Systems), which uses methods such as UV lamps to kill or inactivate plankton, bacteria, and viruses in ballast water.

Another common method is the use of hull paint, which prevents invasive species from attaching to the vessel's hull. In addition to the vessel, there are strict cleanliness requirements for the cargo itself. High-risk shipments may undergo special biosecurity procedures, including heat treatments and fumigation.

Ship recycling

The manner in which old and obsolete vessels are disposed of should also follow sustainability practices.

RoRo shipping companies must adhere to the green recycling practices outlined in the Hong Kong International Convention for the Safe and Environmentally Sound Recycling of Ships.

This includes strict requirements for the shipyard facilities and the methods used to dismantle the ship, ensuring that the most sustainable procedures are utilized.

As part of the sustainability practices, the recycling process must also consider the health and safety of its workers. Toxic waste must be disposed of safely and the activities must not pose any negative environmental impact on the local communities.

Waste management

Green waste management practices aim to protect marine biodiversity and reduce the ecological footprint of RoRo shipping. The Zero Garbage Overboard principle, for example, is a commitment to refrain from releasing any garbage, other than food waste, into the ocean. All garbage produced on board should be disposed of using appropriate methods at the approved onshore facilities.

Shipping companies may also have specific procedures in place to handle sludge and bilge water, which can contain oils, grease, and chemicals. Modern technology can be used to analyze the water content and prevent high amounts of residue from being discharged into the ocean. The waste collected is then safely disposed of onshore.

Net zero emission goals

The green initiatives in RoRo shipping go beyond the mere compliance of current regulations. Höegh Autoliners, are pioneering the industry with the ambitious goals for net zero emissions by 2040.

As the leading roll-on roll-off car shipping company we are building 12 new zero carbon-ready Aurora Class vessels that are on track to become the world's most sustainable car carriers.

These vessels will be the first to receive DNV's ammonia and methanol-ready notations in the PCTC segment. With the arrival of the first vessel in August 2024, Aurora Class will revolutionize the space with more than 50% lower carbon footprint than the current industry standard.

Despite its environmentally friendly nature, the Auroras will also be the largest RoRo car shipping vessel in the industry, with a capacity of up to 9,100 cars.

Let us handle your shipment responsibly

At Höegh Autoliners, our commitment to a greener future goes hand in hand with our high standard of service. We will handle your shipment in the most efficient, secure, and environmentally friendly manner possible.

Please fill in this form to get a quote.