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Decarbonization in the Shipping Industry

There are some major changes underway in the shipping industry. Recently, several major organizations in the industry committed to decarbonization by 2030. Today on the blog we’ll look at the significance of this commitment. 

Support for $5 Billion Research Fund

Back on March 10, 2021, representatives from all over the industry came together to announce something big. They were supporting a proposed $5 billion fund to develop and support decarbonization in the industry. Eight governments backed this proposal and submitted it to the International Maritime Organization (IMO) for review. This is significant for several reasons. 

For one, without coordinated international efforts like this, decarbonization is simply a pipe dream. It is an initiative that requires international cooperation. So, with eight countries (Nigeria, Switzerland, Singapore, Greece, Georgia, Liberia, Malta, and Japan) and several large organizations (BIMCO and IMCA to name two) backing the proposal, this signals true cross-national commitment. Additionally, the funding proposal itself is targeted with very particular goals to drive change. It would create a research and development board which would fund R&D efforts across the globe, including in developing countries. 

This is a key commitment, as currently there aren’t the necessary technologies to decarbonize the industry at scale. So, with this plan in place, the foundation is in place for accelerated change. 

Decarbonization: A UN Initiative

This proposal is actually in response to an initiative from the United Nations. Back in 2018, UN delegates associated with the IMO agreed to reduce total emissions by 50% (from levels in 2008) by 2050. The recent proposal is a sign of additional commitment to specific action steps to help meet this goal. By putting funding behind research and development for emerging technologies, the industry will be able to create a decarbonized future that can reduce environmental impact and also create sustainable practices.

Potential Solutions: Ammonia and More

Creating these low- and no-carbon solutions will be a challenge. However, there are already some ideas about how this might develop. One such solution is ammonia. Ammonia is a fuel source that doesn’t emit any carbon when it’s burned. Also, it can be made fairly simply with renewable electricity, air, and water, and it can be stored much more easily than other fuel sources like hydrogen. Plus, it boasts an extremely high energy density, making it an ideal fuel source. 

However, there aren’t currently any shipping vessels with the equipment to burn ammonia for fuel. Plus, nobody is creating ammonia in a climate-friendly way at scale currently. So, these are two areas to be on the lookout for over the next several years. It’s likely that some of the projects from the $5 billion research and development fund will focus on green ammonia production and creating ammonia-fueled ships. There are some other options innovators are considering as well. For example, hydrogen could be a potential fuel source going forward. Additionally, innovative fuel cells and wind-harnessing technologies are in the works. 

One thing is for certain: there’s a revolution in the shipping industry to move towards greener, more sustainable practices. This is an exciting and necessary step as we try to protect the environment while serving consumer and business needs across the globe. 

Moon Trailer Leasing offers mobile offices to companies and organizations across Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio and Tennessee. We have offices of all sizes for rent and sale. Call 502-200-2315 for a fast and free quote.

How Railcars are Designed to Haul Shipping Containers

Rail freight transport is a huge industry. Railways help businesses haul cargo of all types, from cars to raw materials and steel frames. There are several types of rail car, each designed for a particular purpose. Some of these specifically haul containers. Let’s take a look at some of the main railcars for containers.

Overview of Rail Transport

For context, here’s a quick summary of rail freight transport. Any use of railroads for commercial cargo purposes (not transportation) is rail freight transport. Locomotives haul a series of linked freight cars along railway infrastructure as part of the supply chain. They may move goods partially or fully between shippers and destinations. There are numerous freight car types for different goods and materials. Some of these are specifically focused on containers, like Moon’s storage containers. Containerization has become an integral part of rail freight transport, just like with all other aspects of the global supply chain today. Below, we will review two of the most common car types used for containers.

Conventional Intermodal Railcars

One of the common railcar types used for shipping containers is the conventional intermodal railcar. These are articulated (meaning they share wheels between cars) flat railcars that are great for trailers and containers. They haul shipping containers that can’t stack, usually due to route height restrictions. The articulated feature helps these railcars reduce slack between cars. Slack action is basically how much movement one car has before its motion affects an adjoined car. By reducing slack, the ride quality is better and makes for a less bumpy trip for fragile cargo. Sizing on these railcars can vary, from around 50 feet to over 80 feet in length.

Double Stack Intermodal Railcars: Maximum Efficiency for Containers

Double stack intermodal railcars are similar to conventional intermodal railcars in a few ways. They are also articulated to help improve ride quality for fragile cargo, and are flat. However, these railcars have the ability to haul stacked shipping containers. They can carry a second shipping container on top of the first. This maximizes efficiency and allows for a greater amount of cargo transportation. They also utilize wells often times. Wells reduce the height of stacked containers and lower the center of gravity. This both avoids problems with height restrictions along routes and creates more stability. Wells also improve security for containers. The walls created by the well surround the bottom container and make it impossible to open the container door while it is on the railcar.

There is a high degree of size customization on these railcars, due to their specialization for shipping container transportation. As such, sizes vary from 40 feet to 50 feet and more for containers of all sizes, from 20 foot to 40 and 50 foot containers and larger.

Moon Trailer Leasing offers mobile offices to companies and organizations across Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio and Tennessee. We have offices of all sizes for rent and sale. Call 502-200-2315 for a fast and free quote.

Answers to 6 Frequently Asked Questions about Buying A Used Shipping Container

Buy A Used Shipping ContainerBuying A Used Shipping Container FAQs

Are you interested in buying used shipping containers? Moon Trailer Leasing has been specializing in buying and selling used shipping containers for decades. Many of our customers do not need a new shipping container. These customer typical find that a used shipping container serves their needs while also saving money.

If you are shopping around for shipping containers, you may be interested in learning more about our large selection of used shipping containers available for purchase in Louisville, Kentucky. Here are some answers to the frequently asked questions we get from people shopping around for used containers.

6 Frequently Asked Questions about Used Containers

1. What sizes do your used shipping containers come in?

We have been buying and selling used shipping containers for a very long time. Given this, our inventory includes used shipping containers in a wide variety of sizes. We offer used high cube containers and standard containers. High cube containers are about 1 foot taller and six inches wider than standard containers. They tend to be a popular choice for commercial and industrial clients. We also offer used containers that are either ground level or dock level, depending on your needs.

2. What condition are your used shipping containers in?

We sell shipping containers that are in different conditions. While all of our used shipping containers are still of high quality and built to serve as great storage units, they vary in terms of wear and tear. Some of our containers are what we would call “cargo-worthy.” This is a used cargo container that is certainly capable of storing and transporting cargo. Other used containers are what we call “one trip” containers. If you are interested in purchasing a used shipping container, we can easily describe our selection to you so that you can get a container that fully meets your storage needs.

3. What do the shipping container ratings mean in terms of A, B and C?

Companies that buy and sell used shipping containers sometimes apply different ratings to distinguish between the amount of wear and tear. This may include A, B and C ratings. It is important to note that these types of ratings are not really objective. They are based on the opinion of a particular shipping container dealer, so it is important to work with a company that has a trustworthy reputation and stands by every shipping container sale.

4. What is a used “one trip” shipping container?

A cargo container that is referred to as a “one trip container” is typically one made internationally (usually China) and shipped to the U.S. filled with cargo. After the container arrives in the U.S. it is sold, often times in “like new” condition. While one trip containers have been used, they are typically in excellent condition. Oftentimes they are free of the dings, dents, rust, markings and general wear and tear that older containers with more use have. They are also wind and water tight. These used portable storage containers have a long life ahead of them. Compared to shipping containers that have been around for a longer time, you’ll also find that the color of one trip containers is more predictable. They are usually white, tan or gray.

5. How “used” are used shipping containers?

The answer to this question varies greatly depending on where you purchase your used shipping container. We sell used shipping containers in a variety of grades and conditions. Because of this, we highly recommend a pre-purchase unit inspection in person. You are invited to come out to our storage yard and carefully inspect any storage container unit you are thinking about buying. It’s also important to note that we sell our used containers “as is” so we want you to know exactly what you are purchasing. We price our used shipping containers according to condition and as mentioned previously, all of the used shipping containers that we sell still provide excellent storage capabilities.

6. How many used cargo containers do you have for sale?

The answer to this question depends. Our inventory is constantly changing. We have been selling new and used shipping containers to companies in Kentucky and Southern Indiana for decades so we have a strong network of customers. Depending on demand, time of year, and many other factors, we have a varying number of new and used containers available for purchase. We do spend a lot of time keeping our shipping container inventory stocked so chances are we’ll have just what you need if you give us a call.

For more information about buying used shipping containers from Moon Trailer Leasing in Louisville, Kentucky, give us a call today at 502-776-2199. We’d be glad to answer any of the questions that you have. And if you’re interested we’ll also be happy to schedule a day and time for you to stop by our Louisville conex box storage yard to show you our current inventory.