Future Fuels and Technology


The ‘FUTURE FUELS AND TECHNOLOGY FOR LOW- AND ZERO-CARBON SHIPPING PROJECT (FFT PROJECT)’ is a partnership project between the Government of the Republic of Korea and IMO aiming to support GHG emissions reduction from international shipping by promoting the uptake of future fuels and technology and will be implemented by the IMO Secretariat (Marine Environment Division -MED).


The latest donation to the Delivering Strategy and Reform-Voyage Together trust Fund, was presented to Secretary-General Lim (left) on 30 June 2022 by Mr. Sang Keun Song, Vice-Minister, Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries of the Republic of Korea. Since 2016 the Republic of Korea has made annual donations to the fund of US$2.0 million. As of 2022, the Republic of Korea funds the 'Future fuels and technology for low-and zero-carbon shipping' project (FFT project) to support GHG reduction from international shipping by promoting the uptake of future fuels and technology which will be implemented by the IMO Secretariat (Marine Environment Division -MED). 

Key Goals

The project aims to support the revision and implementation of the Initial Strategy on reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from ships (the 'Initial IMO Strategy') and development of mid-term GHG reduction measures by providing technical analysis to the Organization in support of relevant discussions held in the Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC). 

The project will consist of three main workstreams, as follows:

  • carrying out study/research to identify the state-of-play and projections regarding the global uptake and dissemination of low- and zero-carbon marine technology and fuels;
  • identifying and supporting possible incentives/regulatory mechanisms, including safety and training issues, to promote the uptake of low- and zero-carbon fuels and technology including mid-, long-term GHG reduction measures; and
  • promoting technical cooperation (e.g., pilot projects) and organizing outreach activities to reinforce mutual understanding and cooperation between developed and developing countries and global shipping industry.

As part of the first phase of this project, IMO Secretariat (MED) will carry out the study on the readiness and availability of low- and zero-carbon marine technology/fuels and set up a new IMO dedicated website for sharing latest facts in this area.


This project is funded by the Republic of Korea through the Voyage Together Trust Fund for a period up to June 2025 (with an expectation of additional funding beyond 2023).

The IMO GHG TC Trust Fund will complement the project, as appropriate. 

Main deliverable 1

One of the main focuses of the first phase of the project is a 'Study on the Readiness and Availability of Low- And Zero-Carbon Ship Technology and Marine Fuels' which aims to contribute to the identification of the state-of-play and projections regarding the global uptake and dissemination of low- and zero-carbon marine technology and fuels.  

In 2018, IMO adopted the Initial IMO Strategy, setting out a vision which confirms IMO's commitment to reducing GHG emissions from international shipping and to phasing them out as soon as possible.

MEPC 77 Initiated the Revision of the Strategy and MEPC 78, following consideration of varying views on the levels of ambition required and their achievability requested the Secretariat to consider carrying out additional studies and organizing information session(s) and/or symposia, as appropriate, supporting the revision process of the Initial GHG Strategy. 

This study is part of that support provided by the IMO Secretariat.

Low and zero-carbon fuels will be needed to decarbonize shipping.

For different fuel and technology options, there is a need to consider issues such as safety, regulation, pricing, infrastructure availability, lifecycle emissions, supply chain constraints, barriers to adoption and more.

This study will, in particular, focus on three main aspects relevant to the readiness and availability of low- and zero-carbon marine technology and fuels, namely by analyzing their:  

  1. demand and capacity developments;   
  2. technology readiness; and
  3. commercial readiness.  

The technology and commercial readiness of alternative fuels and technology will be analyzed under three CO2 emissions reduction goals and ambition scenarios by 2050, namely the:   

  1. Initial IMO Strategy Scenario (IMO);  
  2.  Net Zero Emission Scenario (NZE); 
  3. Zero by 2050 Scenario (ZERO).    

Main deliverable 2  

The other focus of the first phase of the project is to development of a "New dedicated IMO website on future fuels and technology" which aims to support access to information among all IMO members on future marine fuels and low-carbon on-board ship technology.   

The objective is that this website will work as a global hub for promoting and information sharing on the uptake of future fuels and technology and GHG emission reduction from international shipping in the mid- and long-term, particularly accelerating access to information for developing States on latest developments of decarbonization of shipping, and how to get involved in that.   

This dedicated IMO website will be regularly upload and share latest facts about future fuels and technology, and relevant information, data and/or statistics are including but not limited to as follows:

  1. statistics and latest information on uptake of future fuels and technology, port/bunkering infrastructures, fuel price and etc.
  2. future insight on GHG reduction scenarios and possible mitigation pathways, fuel mixed and cost, and etc.
  3. materials on training, education, co-operation activities and events.


IMO has worked on addressing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from international shipping continuously since 1997, in particular, through adopting global mandatory technical and operational energy efficiency measures for ships under MARPOL Annex VI (resolution MEPC.75(40)).

MARPOL Annex VI entered into force in May 2005 and, as of July 2022, it has been ratified by 104 States, representing almost 97% of the world tonnage.

This work includes Assembly resolution A.963(23) on IMO policies and practices related to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from ships, adopted on 5 December 2003, urging the MEPC to identify and develop the mechanisms needed to achieve the limitation or reduction of GHG emissions from international shipping.

Moreover, a number of binding measures to improve the energy efficiency of international shipping and reduce its carbon intensity have been adopted by Parties to MARPOL Annex VI since 2011, including the Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI), the Ship Energy Efficiency Management Plan (SEEMP), the ship fuel oil consumption data collection system (DCS), and more recently the Energy Efficiency Existing Ship Index (EEXI) and the Carbon Intensity Indicator (CII rating system).

In 2017, IMO approved at the its Assembly thirtieth session, the Strategic Plan for the Organization for the six-year period 2018 to 2023 (resolution A.1110(30)) which identifies in particular in its strategic direction 3 (SD 3) (Respond to climate change) that "in its role as the global regulator of international shipping, IMO will develop appropriate solutions to reduce the shipping industry's contribution to air pollution and its impact on climate change".

In line with its Strategic Plan, IMO Member States adopted at its MEPC seventy-second session (April 2018), the Initial IMO Strategy on reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from ships (resolution MEPC.304(72)), representing a global framework for Member States and the industry, setting out a vision and levels of ambition for shipping decarbonization.

This Initial IMO Strategy is the first milestone set out in the Roadmap for developing a comprehensive IMO Strategy on reduction of GHG emissions from ships (the Roadmap) approved at MEPC 70. The Roadmap identifies that a revised Strategy is to be adopted in 2023. IMO initiated the revision of the Initial GHG Strategy in December 2021, with a view to adoption of the revised Strategy at MEPC 80 in July 2023.

Reduction of GHG emissions from shipping will continue to be a vital strategic direction for IMO, both in short and the long term and in doing so will help support the UN Sustainable Development Goals. 

Sustainable Development Goals 

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development provides a shared blueprint for prosperity for people and the planet, now and into the future. At its heart are the 17  Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which are an urgent call for action in a global partnership. Among the SDGs, SDG 14 is central to IMO, but the work of IMO and the Future Fuels and Technology project can also be linked to other SDGs, as can be seen below, in particular SDG 13 on climate action.

Other relevant links 

SDG.png This project related three IMO’s ongoing projects dealing with GHG-related matters : 

  1. EU-IMO GMN Project (Capacity Building for Climate Mitigation in the Maritime Shipping Industry): This project initiative unites technology centres – Maritime Technology Cooperation Centres (MTCCs) – in targeted regions into a global network. Together, they are promoting technologies and operations to improve energy efficiency in the maritime sector and help navigate shipping into a low-carbon future. Developing countries and, in particular, Least Developed Countries and Small Islands Developing States, will be the main beneficiaries of this ambitious initiative 
  2. NORWAY-IMO GREENVOYAGE 2050 Project (Global Partnership supporting developing countries) : This project aims to transform the shipping industry towards a lower carbon future. The global partnership project is supporting developing countries, including SIDS and LDCs, in meeting their commitment towards relevant climate change and energy efficiency goals, for international shipping, through supporting the Initial IMO GHG Strategy 
  3. The Republic of Korea -IMO GHG SMART Project (Sustainable Maritime Transport Training Programme) : This project aims to support LDCs and SIDS with the implementation of the IMO GHG Strategy via building sufficient human capacity in these countries. This includes development of a comprehensive training programme and post-training monitoring, evaluation, and refinement.  

More information 

  • For more information on this project, please contact jseo@imo.org (Project Manager: Ji-man Seo).