Easy information sharing is an urgent environmental issue

Wednesday, August 19, 2020


Electronic logbooks should replace their paper siblings



At Eimskip we care deeply about our planet and the living world and this is reflected in every facet of our daily work. Since 2014 we have worked in close collaboration with the sustainability software company Klappir Green Solutions to implement electronic logbooks into our daily operations. Despite the recent digitization of almost every aspect of our lives, such logbooks are still generally kept in paper form onboard vessels.

Klappir's electronic logbooks now allow us to digitally record oil consumption, waste disposal, and a variety of information concerning the location and voyage history of each vessel, as well as carefully track our goals for further reducing our carbon footprint.

As of today, our crews still log all information both electronically and in paper form, as the international community has yet to approve electronic logbooks worldwide. Our hope is that electronic logbooks will soon be approved by authorities across the globe and that their worldwide distribution will be rapid and purposeful. The Icelandic Government set an admirable example when the Icelandic Environment Agency authorized the use of Klappir's electronic logbooks in 2018, and we at Eimskip are proud to be one of the first transportation companies in the world to use electronic logbooks. We hope that many more governments will follow suit.

Before we began using the electronic logbooks, vast amounts of valuable data was imprisoned, so to speak, in paper form onboard our vessels, and could not be used by management on-shore for improved decision-making regarding our operations. This old state of affairs now feels like ancient history, as both our vessel crews and managers on-shore now have access to all this data in real-time. As a result, communication between ports and Eimskip offices has never been easier and more pleasant. The data simply flows between the vessels and the offices through a data cloud. In addition, our vessels can respond to various statutory information requirements, such as the emission control area (ECA), where tightened emission regulations apply. Fuel use is also closely monitored in Iceland's environmental jurisdiction as well as emission in ports.

In addition to all that, the electronic logbooks provide us with detailed voyage reports that we use to fulfill various environmental requirements issued by the United Nations, the International Maritime Organization, and the European Union. The electronic logbooks reduce paper waste and facilitate accurate record-keeping, as the logbooks standardize procedures and promote consistency. Last but not least, we can monitor our carbon footprint more closely. Our determined effort has decreased Eimskip's footprint by 16% per unit moved since 2015. 

Easy information sharing is an urgent environmental issue. We at Eimskip are committed to using this unique digital information technology to reduce our ecological footprint and improve our business operations.

Authors in photo: Falasteen Abu Libdeh, Specialist in Environmental Issues and Johann Steinar Steinarsson, Vessel Operation Manager

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