New IMO emission targets require bold actions. Are your company ready for the future regulations?

“The more you prepare, the luckier you get”

Viking Heat Engines recently invited the Norwegian shipping industry to a breakfast seminar in Oslo to introduce its waste heat recovery system, the CraftEngine, as a powerful tool to reduce CO2 emissions and fuel costs in the shipping industry. The seminar was motivated by the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) decision to reduce sulphur emissions from ships by 2020.

Speakers were Sveinung Oftedal, Chairman for the IMO negotiations on emission reduction; Vidar Helgesen, Norway's Special Envoy to the High-Level Panel on Building a Sustainable Ocean Economy and former Minister of Climate and the Environment; Roger Strevens, Head of Sustainability at Wallenius Wilhelmsen and Tor Hodne, CEO at Viking Heat Engines.
Sveinung Oftedal, Chairman of the IMO emission negotiations

Oftedal went through the events, strategies and deliberations leading up to the historical decision made by the IMO on April 13. He admitted that it had taken time and effort to get all the 170-member states to agree on a common document. 

“We needed to equilibrate between ambitions and what is possible to achieve,” he said.

The IMO's Initial strategy on reduction of GHG emissions from ships sets out not only the short-term goals (2018-2023), but also medium (2023) and longer-term goals (2030 and beyond). Oftedal envisaged three pillars for the road ahead: 1) that nations introduce policies that encourage low/zero emission technologies and fuels, 2) the development of an international legal framework to ensure needed emission reductions from international shipping and 3) technical co-operation to ensure the required progress at the IMO.

Vidar Helgesen said in his speech on Sustainability as a major regulator for the maritime sector: what can we expect from policy makers? that voters will put greater stress on politicians to implement stricter laws to protect the environment and reduce GHG emissions.

“There are forces at play that changes how businesses do business,” he said. “Climate change elicits urgency. What touches peoples’ hearts like dying bees and plastic in the oceans effect voters and voters tend to effect politicians and investors.”
Vidar Helgesen, Norways former Minister of Climate and the Environment

He went on to say that the new IMO regulations were considered very ambitious only years ago and hailed it as a major milestone for international shipping. “Milestones have a particular function," he said. "Once you reach them, you start looking for the next," he said and stressed the importance of having a global framework and international bodies like IMO work out new regulations. “Global rules have to be a mainstay in global business,” he said. He believes climate policies will accelerate in the coming years. “The EU talk about gearing up actions and setting higher targets,” he said. “Shipping has an enormous potential to contribute, and we will need all possible solutions coming from the industry and from companies such as Viking Heat Engines.”

To view all the speeches, visit Viking Heat Engines' YouTube channel.

Roger Strevens from Wallenius Wilhelmsen said that he thinks the IMO's emission strategy is progressive and ambitious. “We couldn't agree more that we need one global set of rules,” he said. “It gives an important signal to the innovation sector that changes will happen and that players who act now will be rewarded in the future.”
Roger Strevens, Head of Sustainability at Wallenius Wilhelmsen

He went on to say that shipping is like any other business; wary of change and uncertainty, but that it needs to find a way to navigate this uncertainty. “The only thing that is certain about the future is uncertainty, but we know that disruptions are more sustainable than what they displace,” he said. He envisaged pro-activity in terms of meeting more environmentally friendly targets and said that Wallenius Wilhelmsen focuses on two main things: influencing regulatory matters and pushing for new technological innovations. “The more you prepare, the luckier you get,” he concluded.

Tor Hodne, CEO at Viking Heat Engines, took the opportunity to present the CraftEngine technology and how it can reduce CO2 emissions from ships and help reduce fuel costs. “What most people don’t know is that about 50% of the world’s energy production is today wasted in the form of heat,” he said. “Half of this heat is wasted at temperatures below 120 degrees Celsius. Until now, few technologies have been able to use this energy. It is in this context that Viking Heat Engines has developed its innovative product series -- the CraftEngine.”

Tor Hodne, CEO at Viking Heat Engines

He explained that the CraftEngine is an Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC) machine that produces electricity from low-temperature waste heat. It can be any waste heat, from any source, as long as it is 80-90 degrees Celsius or more. “The CraftEngine can make large contributions in reducing fuel consumption and thus CO2 emissions, and save ship operators money,” he said. He explained that the CraftEngine has been through five generations of product development, which has resulted in a highly reliable, durable and affordable system. 

The new large engine suitable for roll-on/roll-off, container, tank, bulk and LPG-carriers will be in large scale serial production from 2021 onwards, but selected customers will be able to purchase the first units for earlier installations already in 2019 and 2020. 

For more information or to book a meeting, please contact Tor Hodne at or Geir Robstad at

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