UK shipbroker Braemar has launched a new carbon offsetting tool as it highlighted the growing importance of decarbonisation efforts in its markets.

The London-listed group said Braemar Offset is a digital platform aimed at reducing ship and cargo emissions.

Shipowners and operators will be able to track and measure their carbon footprint, and then use a “diverse and regularly replenished” portfolio of offset projects to reduce it.

These include sustainable agroforestry on the Guatemalan conservation coast, protecting habitats for critically endangered species in Indonesia and reducing air pollution in China’s Jiangxi province.

The service draws on the existing partnership with tech company Zuma Labs.

Braemar Offset is integrated with the Venetian trading platform, enabling clients to also transact directly on Braemar Screen, a service for trading dry bulk forward freight agreements.

Braemar’s chief operating officer, Tris Simmonds, said: “Shareholders, financiers and customers now frequently link ESG [environmental, social and governance] factors to a company’s long-term viability.

“Shipping companies that underperform in this area increasingly find it harder to access capital, to recruit and retain staff, and endure a growing regulatory burden.”

He described Braemar Offset as the first step in plans to provide an end-to-end sustainability solution for clients.

“We’ve already integrated it with Braemar Screen, and we look forward to announcing soon how we’ll be further enhancing our sustainability offering,” he said.

Part of the net-zero toolbox

David Holland, associate director at Braemar, said as a sale-and-purchase shipbroker, he finds few subjects more important right now than ESG.

“Minimising future emissions is important for EEXI [Energy Efficiency Existing Ship Index] and CII [Carbon Intensity Indicator], but retrofits or switching to new fuels won’t completely neutralise unavoidable emissions or help capture historical emissions,” Holland said.

“Many of the shipowners I speak with see carbon offsetting as a necessary supplement to their emissions reduction strategy.”

Another associate director, Jack Richards, said the group is already seeing clauses in charterparties that require the capture of emissions data.

“The next logical step will be clauses which specify a voyage is to be carbon-neutral,” he said.

“While the long-term emphasis must of course be on harnessing new technologies and alternative fuels as our industry navigates its way towards a greener and more sustainable future, carbon offsetting offers the opportunity to make an immediate positive impact.”

Braemar has been carbon neutral since 2017.