Green shipping future

That we have come to a point where everyone needs to pull their weight in battling climate change, is an idea that gains traction by the day across the Western world. Young people – following the example of the 17-year-old Swedish environmental activist Greta Thunberg – are getting more and more vocal, and the nature of the commitments made by political leaders demonstrates that those in power have received the message.

In December 2019, the European Commission presented its European Green Deal, an ambitious package of measures to enable European citizens and businesses to benefit from sustainable green transition. The announcement was met with acclaim by the wider public, as the target of becoming the world’s first climate-neutral continent by 2050 was set for Europe to achieve in the decades to come.

Of course, the need to ensure environmental sustainability had revealed itself many years ago and actions had been taken on various levels long before the introduction of the European Green Deal. It is just that the efforts are to intensify considerably from now on. For those who have already had it as their long-term mission to minimise emissions, it is a welcome opportunity to demonstrate their capabilities and contribute to the materialisation of the much-needed change.

Hailing from Greta’s native Sweden, M.E. Solutions AB (MESAB) is one such company. The marine engineering specialist provides project management, turnkey installations, and retrofitting environmental solutions to the shipping and shipbuilding industry worldwide, which reduce air and water pollution, and energy consumption. MESAB’s powerful vision is one of clean shipping and zero emissions and is being realised under the ‘clean shipping, clean environment, clean conscience for generations to come’ slogan.

Among the standout solutions developed and supplied by the company, are the retrofitting of ballast water treatment systems and exhaust gas cleaning systems. Over the course of the ten years of its existence (est.2009), MESAB has provided turnkey projects with products from some of the world’s most well-known brands, such as Alfa Laval, Ocean Saver, Ecospray Technologies, and many more.

There is a long list of services on offer by the organisation, as MESAB is capable of delivering end-to-end support to its clients’ needs. Starting from pre-survey, to define the future scope of the work ahead, it can then create drawings based on this pre-survey to class and customer approval including: system layout and arrangement in the engine room, piping arrangement, electrical arrangement, and electrical and electronic connections. Furthermore, MESAB possesses the expertise to manufacture and install material kits and take care of the logistics operations of a project. When delivered to the customer, the company can start up and demonstrate how the system works. Once it has been commissioned, MESAB can provide ongoing aftersales maintenance, courtesy of a dedicated follow-up platform designed to assist clients in prolonging the product’s life and service intervals.

The company’s skillset finds an application in a wide range of systems. For instance, MESAB provides the full package to fulfil regulations regarding the installation of scrubber exhaust gas cleaning systems. The integration of a scrubber is a major retrofit project, as the system has to be optimised in terms of size, placement, and economic factors. All parameters must be weighed up correctly and different factors must be taken into account regarding the various choices of systems available. Owing to its longstanding experience, MESAB has the ability to work on any type of scrubber as chosen by the customer and perform all the aforementioned steps, thus supplying a technology-backed solution for greener shipping.

In a similar vein, it can also retrofit ballast water treatment systems in a way that reduces water pollution. Through ship site surveys and 3D scanning, preplanning,design and engineering, project planning, turnkey installation in dock/voyage, startup commissioning, crew training, and managing all the documentation, MESAB applies a meticulous approach in coming up with customised solutions. So much so that the company’s reference list includes a diverse group of customers, such as cruise ship companies, car carriers, bulkers, and RoRo vessels.

Ever since its foundation in 2009, MESAB has been on the growth path. In the 2014-15 period, the business saw a tremendous increase in sales and in 2016, it was acquired by another Swedish organisation – Radscan AB, which specialises in the industrial energy sector and environmental management. Combining their efforts, the two entities have carried on partnering towards achieving cleaner water and air in the years since.

The favourable effect the acquisition from Radscan had on MESAB can be felt in the continued organic growth achieved by the marine engineering company. Assured of the positive business climate that is forecast for the coming years, the business foresees such an expansion that it expects to increase its annual workforce from 150 employees to 500-strong staff. This is also indicative of the amount of work that is set to head MESAB’s way and the company’s need to recruit skilled professionals who will play an instrumental role in fulfilling its growth objectives and managing MESAB’s expansion.

M.E. Solutions AB (MESAB)
Installation and retrofitting of exhaust gas cleaning systems and ballast water treatment systems
Acquired by Radscan in 2016
Planning to grow annual staff count from 150 to 500 employees in the next five years