French tyre manufacturer Michelin has signed a letter of commitment for maritime transport with Neoline, a compatriot shipowner offering carbon-free shipping services.

Neoline’s decarbonized shipping service relies on clean and renewable wind energy as the main propulsion for its 136-metre-long RoRo cargo ships with 4,200 square metres of sails.

The innovative solution has the potential to reduce up to 90 per cent of CO2 emissions related to transatlantic maritime freight transport.

As informed, the transport commitment signed by Michelin concerns the transport by sailing cargo ships of tires loaded in containers from Halifax (Canada) to Saint-Nazaire – Montoir de Bretagne (France) on the pilot line opened by Neoline, which will also serve the archipelago of Saint Pierre and Miquelon, as well as Baltimore (USA).

Back in 2019, Neoline selected the Loire-based company Neopolia S.A.S. for the construction of its first two sailing cargo ships. The company has now confirmed it is working with its partners on the different options available to start the construction of the first vessels as soon as possible.

Neoline plans to open its transatlantic line with the first operating vessel in 2023. With the arrival of the second vessel, scheduled a year later, Michelin will gradually entrust Neoline with at least 50% of the group’s containers transported on this line.

Like the group’s sites, which are committed to the ambitious goal of zero CO2 emissions by 2050, Michelin intends to test new solutions to decarbonize its logistics operations.

“This initiative and this new partnership promote innovation in the field of carbon-free transport. This first step in carbon-free shipping is fully in line with the CSR strategy of Michelin’s operations. It will contribute to achieving the objective of reducing CO2 emissions from logistics by 15% in absolute terms between 2018 and 2030,” Pierre-Martin Huet, Michelin Group Supply Chain Director, commented.

“This first commitment concerns Eastbound flow (from the Americas to Europe) and comes in addition to an already well-filled order book in Westbound direction (from Europe to the Americas),” Jean Zanuttini, President of Neoline, said.

“With our sailing cargo ships, we are developing a mode of transport that is more environmentally friendly, adapted to the current economic and logistical reality of shippers and not dependent on fossil fuels.”

Source: Offshore Energy