LNG ships chased by UN using satellites

With the help of satellites, the UN is going to chase LNG-fuelled ships and other major polluters and emitters of methane. Methane emissions need to be drastically reduced and the Methane Alert and Response System, should start contributing to this. As a climate-friendly alternative to conventional fuel oil, the shipping industry has invested heavily in LNG-fuelled ships in recent years. However, in practice this turns out to be a lot less climate-friendly, thanks to methane emissions. Only last year, for instance, environmental organisation Transport & Environment warned that the green painted colour is the only green thing about using LNG Ships. Transport & Environment even accused shipping companies promoting LNG of “greenwashing”.

According to the UN, some 25% of the human impact on climate change is determined by methane emissions. Reducing methane emissions is therefore the way to rapidly limit global warming, according to US government climate official John Kerry. To take targeted action, the MARS system collects state-of-the-art data from multiple satellites to track methane emitters and alert relevant parties. The UN will first focus on using the system to first detect the largest emitters of methane from the energy sector, after which the system will move on to detect the smaller emission sources.