Canadian Nuclear Laboratories (CNL), Canada’s premier nuclear science and technology organization, is pleased to announce that it has been awarded a contract by Transport Canada to develop an assessment tool to examine clean technologies that could reduce greenhouse gas emissions and the release of other pollutants from marine vessels. Using what is known as CNL’s Marine-Zero Fuel (MaZeF) Assessment Tool, the objective is to help Canada assess and pursue the use of hydrogen and other clean energy technologies to transition away from traditional forms of fuel that are contributing to marine pollution and climate change.

This three-year project is funded by Transport Canada’s Innovation Centre. Once complete, the assessment tool will be applicable to marine operations in Canada, both nationally and internationally, and comes as the Government of Canada works with the International Maritime Organization and international partners to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

“CNL is excited to work closely with Transport Canada to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and address ongoing environmental issues in the marine sector,” commented Joe McBrearty, CNL President and CEO. “As a leader in nuclear science and technology, and research in hydrogen production, storage and safety, CNL has a deep understanding of clean energy technologies and their applications. We look forward to applying this expertise to the marine industry, and help Canada continue to protect the environment and fight climate change.”

“The Government of Canada is committed to protecting our waters by investing in innovative and clean technologies that reduce the impacts of shipping on the marine environment,” added the Minister of Transport, the Honourable Marc Garneau. “Through Transport Canada’s Clean Marine Funding Program, we are supporting projects that help reduce air pollutants and greenhouse gas emissions in the marine sector. Our partnership with Canadian companies like Canadian Nuclear Laboratories will not only advance these green technologies but also protect Canada’s marine environment for generations to come.”

The project will focus on the development of the MaZeFTM Assessment Tool to analyze the energy ecosystem within the marine industry, and identify opportunities for Canadian operators to transition to clean energy technologies. CNL scientists will also examine different technologies that can be used for the production, storage and handling of hydrogen for marine vessels. Overall, these activities will produce a better understanding of the various propulsion methods available to the marine sector, including fuel cell engines and ammonia combustion technologies in existing engines.

Research will also focus on expanding the MaZeFTM Assessment Tool to include feasibility and business considerations, safety regulations and life-cycle analysis. This will enable the analysis of the use of hydrogen technologies for port-side operations, such as fork lifts, cranes and transportation vehicles.

“Around the world and across Canada, governments and industries are working to enact policy and investment decisions to help reduce carbon emissions and slow the rate of climate change,” explained Dr. Jeff Griffin, CNL’s Vice President of Science and Technology. “Hydrogen has the potential to play a major role. CNL has extensive expertise, technologies and facilities that can help advance these discussions, including a $55 million state-of-the-art hydrogen research laboratory. All of this puts CNL in a great position to lead this work in collaboration with Transport Canada.”