Great start for SIRS in Brevik

Thorbjørn Aasig Lund and Stian Larsson
As part of the initiatives for the Safety First Programme, a new reporting tool SIRS (Safety Incident Reporting System) has been introduced in various terminals and warehouses.

At Brevik terminal, the tool has taken off with a great start. Shortly after introducing the tool, we saw the first reports for Brevik, and the terminal was quick to implement and start using the new reporting system.

“The old deviation report was outdated and on a small paper. It had a few regular health and safety lines and a little empty blank space where we could write down in short words what had happened. Having our mindset on being more innovative and more focused on safety and the environment, SIRS came just in perfect time for us,” says Safety Representative Stian Larsson. “I am very happy with this improvement and especially how easy it is to use”.

Small stickers with QR codes have been placed in machines and buildings, which makes it very easy for employees and third parties to report it if an incident should occur. The follow-up and possible corrective actions needed to rectify the safety reports are done by the safety representative and managers all together.

MD at Brevik terminal Thorbjørn Aasig Lund says: “When we have a bit more data, the next step for us in Brevik will be to evaluate safety performance and share findings and best practice with our colleagues in the terminal in Brevik and within the rest of the DFDS network”.

“We carry for women” going strong

We Carry for Women, the CSR project by BU MED and the Women Entrepreneurs Association of Turkey (KAGIDER), continues providing benefits to Turkish women entrepreneurs.

The project has been making a real contribution to the business world by transporting women entrepreneurs’ products to European countries for free. As an ongoing project, it is already making a notable change in the industry. Applications were received during the summer of 2020 and BU MED recently started transporting women entrepreneurs’ goods all over Europe. So far, BU Med and logistics partners carried 6 units from 5 different companies of women entrepreneurs. More is being planned for the rest of the year. 

The logistic partners, which are also BU Med’s key accounts, are a key part during this project. We Carry for Women is currently supported by 21 logistic partners, 2 of which are new accounts and joined the project after having heard in the pressAll these logistic partners collaborated willingly with the women entrepreneurs and showed them their wholehearted support. In addition, the project received more media visibility via the logistic partners’ communication activities. 

Besides the traditional press activities, the project’s communication is supported with a TV show and on social media. Nearly 6 million people were reached with the traditional and digital communication activities since July. 

“We Carry for Women”, which is a union of forces in the logistics sector during the pandemic, allowed DFDS BU MED to stand out as an opinion leader in the logistics sector and its stakeholders. 

Climate plan: how do we measure its effect?

A few weeks ago, The Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), a charity that runs a global environmental disclosure system for investors, companies, cities and states, sent a letter to companies emitting substantial amounts of greenhouse gases. The letter urged the companies to use science-based targets (SBTi) in line with the Paris Agreement to avert climate change. 

DFDS was one of three Danish companies to receive this letter.

We have a new climate plan and concrete initiatives in place to bring down our relative emissions by 45% by 2030 and make us climate neutral by 2050. Therefore, setting science-based targets based on the standards to come for the shipping industry is a natural next step for us. This will help us support the movement towards more transparency in global companies’ CO2 commitments and results, says Sofie Hebeltoft, CSR Director 

It is not as easy as it seems, though. The Science Based Targets method is based on the principle that different industries take responsibility for a percentage of global emissions based on their size. However, there is no standard for shipping yet, no framework to use for our particular industry. Different instances have opposing standards for measurement and we end up documenting the same numbers in several different ways,” says Sofie 

Therefore, we are happy that they are now planning a way of setting targets that matches the nature of the shipping industry, and which we hope will reflect how we operate and which we can navigate with,” Sofie says. 

And we should not forget that we have come really far with the harder part of the work: A plan that ensures we reach our targets.” 

Immingham feels electric

Frances Williams, HR Director UK & Ireland, and Andrew Byrne, Managing Director in Immingham, at his fully electric vehicle

Getting the house in order is the third track in our climate plans. It deals with the 10% of our total emissions not derived from ship. Facilities, terminal equipment, trucks in logistics, how our buildings consume energy and, what vehicles we use all matter when we measure our environmental impact. 

So in order to ensure we are doing our part to make a difference locallywe are encouraging our colleagues who are eligible for a company car to make a good choice  for the environmental sustainability by making it easier to opt for an electric vehicle.   

We will focus on improving the electric and hybrid vehicle options for example by providing financial assistance alongside the government funded support for the installation of home charging stations. 

Did you know that electricity is not currently considered a taxable fuel for taxable benefit calculation purposes in the UK. This means electricity that is received whilst charging your vehicle on one of our sites is a non-taxable benefit. In addition to this the UK government is not taxing fully electric vehicles at all at the moment, which means that your motoring could be largely free of any charges. 

We are very proud to support our Climate Plan in this way and we already have some members of our senior leadership team taking the lead with their vehicle choices. 

Climate Plan – The long-term track

Watch this video and get a better understanding of what the long-term track of the Climate Plan entails.

Jakob Steffensen, Innovation Lead, explains the three focus areas that make up the long-term track.

DFDS climate plan: next ten years

DFDS’ climate plan will make us climate neutral by 2050. Our short-term plan is to reduce emissions by 45 % from 2008 to 2030. Our main focus is on existing vessels and minor technical upgrades. We will use solutions like correct coating on vessel hulls and decision support systems onboard and in the office. But the fleet will also undergo major upgrades, with modifications of bulbs and propellers.

The plan is based on careful analysis of how we operate today, and which areas have the greatest potential for improvement. It is about evolution – improving and optimising what we have today – while the long term plan is more of a revolution – how we can do things in completely new ways.


Artificial intelligence will help us

Today, we have a monthly fuel report for our vessel operations, but no insights as to what is behind the numbers. We know what we use, but not how these figures are accumulated. Our crews and their shore-side support teams need better information on how they can operate in a more fuel-efficient way. For this, we will use a tool based on artificial intelligence (AI) that will monitor our vessel operations. This data will inform us about where we have excessive fuel consumption, both on routes and on individual vessels.

This new smart AI system located on the vessels’ bridge will give the crews qualified directions on what is the right speed and also real-time advice on which route will help the fuel on board last longer. After a crossing, there will be a report on what the crew has done well in terms of consuming fuel, and also where they can improve.


Promising results with methanol

We plan to introduce small amounts of methanol in the existing propulsion machinery on many of our vessels, in the four stroke engines that make up the majority of our fleet. Together with onsite-produced hydrogen, we will inject the methanol into combustion chambers, replacing up to 10-15% of the heavy fuel oil needed to fuel the same voyage today. This technology  is still under development and we expect it to be approved by engine manufacturers during 2020. We have already done initial testing and the results look promising.

Through doing this, we hope to be able to push the market demand for sustainable fuels like green methanol, one of several fuel sources we continue to investigate. This could have a positive ripple effect on the development of green fuel production nationally and internally.


More efficient hulls

Optimising our use of fuel is one very important factor when it comes to reducing emissions. Another is what we do to improve the hulls, coating and shaping of the propeller curves for a vessel to be able to sail in a more fuel-efficient manner.

“We are constantly scanning the market to pinpoint new ways of optimising what we have,” says Vice President of DFDS’ Technical Organisation Thomas Mørk. “We continuously assess where we should set in based on where we can harvest the greatest effect. The bottom line is that not only are we saving the environment from thousands of tons of CO2 every year, we are also able to work with fuel consumption in a smarter way. In time, this will help us run our vessels cheaper and greener and that just makes good business sense,” Thomas says.

Read more about DFDS’ ambitious climate plan

More on this in the coming weeks







DFDS develops ambitious climate plan

We want to become climate neutral by 2050 and are aiming for a relative reduction of Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions by close to 45% from 2008 to 2030. That corresponds to an approximate reduction of 25-35% between 2019 and 2030. These are the main goals in DFDS’ new climate action plan.


In 2019, DFDS emitted ~2 million tons of CO2. 90% was from our vessels. Continuing to do so would have a negative impact on the environment and climate. It would also put us at significant economic risk: customers will find more climate-friendly suppliers and the costs related to regulatory requirements will increase.


DFDS’ response to this is a new strategic climate action plan that will make us climate neutral by 2050. We are aiming for a relative reduction of GHG emissions by close to 45% from 2008 to 2030. That corresponds to an approximate reduction of 25-35% between 2019 and 2030.


Team members from the Technical Organisation, Innovation & Partnerships, CSR, and Strategy & Consulting have supported management in the development of this plan, and the Executive Management Team will track its development on a quarterly basis.


Three tracks leading to the finish line
The  plan consists of two overall tracks covering the tonnage adaption in short term and long term, as well as a third track ‘getting the house in order’ that covers all other things like facilities and terminal equipment.


The short-term tonnage adaption plan consists of initiatives to be implemented throughout the next 10 years, resulting in close to 45% reduction from 2008 to 2030. It widely consists of minor technical upgrades, including solutions like the use of the correct coatings on vessel hulls and decision support systems. But the fleet will also undergo major upgrades, like modifications of bulbs and propellers.

The long-term tonnage adaption plan is all about how we replace fossil fuels with the new generation of zero emission fuel. The new sustainable fuels are renewable energy stored in the form of for instance ammonia, hydrogen, or methanol. Storing, handling and using these new fuels is very different to how we do things today. We need to learn a lot to be able to make the right strategic decisions. Projects and partnerships will help us learn and share knowledge and reach our goals. The long-term tonnage adaption plan focuses on our new generation of ships.


Getting the house in order addresses the remaining 10% of our total emissions. In short, emissions that don’t come from our vessel-related activities. Initiatives like electric trucks, energy consumption for buildings and hybrid/electric company cars will engage all our colleagues across the business in helping DFDS develop ways of becoming more sustainable. Many of these initiatives are done in cooperation with key suppliers to reduce environmental impact.


DFDS CEO Torben Carlsen says: “I am very happy that we now have this ambitious and comprehensive climate action plan in place. It clearly states how we can and will take responsibility for the environment. It will also help us stay relevant as a service provider in 10, 15, 50 years from now. With the support of every one of our employees, we will be able to turn this plan into reality and at the same time continue our existing efforts to support the environment and local communities.”


More on this in the coming weeks

BU Med “Carry for Women”

Fuat Pamukçu, Melek Yıldız, Özlem Dalga, Emine Erdem and Lars Hoffmann

BU MED recently initiated the corporate social responsibility project “We Carry for Women” in cooperation with KAGİDER (Women Entrepreneurs Association of Turkey).

The project involves transportation of 50 female entrepreneurs’ goods (2 containers for each elected enrepreneur) by DFDS free of charge for a year. Turkish international freight transport and logistics companies have shown a great interest to support women entrepreneurs in Turkey by participating in this project together with DFDS.

“We Carry for Women” is designed to encourage women’s participation in business life, help them stand out in social life, and contribute to their export capabilities. Products of female producers will be shipped free of charge by DFDS in its maritime (departures from Pendik, Yalova and Mersin) and railway networks. This support has grown vastly, particularly during and after the pandemic, and the first transport took place in the last week of June.

The project was introduced to the Turkish press on 3 July through an online press conference with participation of Lars Hoffmann, Head of BU MED, Emine Erdem, President of KAGİDER, and Fuat Pamukçu, VP Sales, Marketing, Business Development & Strategy.

As part of the multi-stranded communication plan designed for the project, “Route of Women Entrepreneurs” TV show started to broadcast on 25 July on Bloomberg HT channel. Emine Erdem and Fuat Pamukçu were the first guests of the TV show, and they pointed out the importance of the project which contributes greatly to making female entrepreneurs more competitive in global markets and helps them get access to the markets overseas. Every Saturday, with the moderation of Özlem Dalga, Corporate Communications Manager in BU MED, “Route of Women Entrepreneurs” will continue to tell stories about female entrepreneurs and provide logistics mentoring and coaching with our business partners as guest hosts.

This TV advertorial for the project was shown on national TV

This is the first episode of the TV show (selected clips have English subtitles)

Fuat Pamukçu says: “The female entrepreneurs to benefit from the “We Carry for Women” program will be chosen by KAGİDER and DFDS. Women’s involvement in the economic life is very important for gender equality as well as for the democratic development. We are very happy to realise this project with KAGİDER, a non-governmental organisation working to empower women by entrepreneurship.”

Özlem Dalga says: “We are positively surprised that the “We Carry For Women” project has been so well received and are very happy that this collaboration project in the logistics sector will help women entrepreuners in this pandemic periode.”

BU MED connects women entrepreneurs

BU MED’s DFDS Academy brought Turkish KAGİDER (Women Entrepreneurs Association of Turkey) and Italian AIDDA (Italian Association of Women Entrepreneurs and Managers) together with the participation of Marie Christine Oghly, World President of World Association of Women Entrepreneurs (FCEM), on Wednesday, June 10th.

The meeting started with the opening speeches of Marie Christine Oghly and National Presidents of AIDDA and KAGİDER, Maria Claudia Torlasco Mastelli and Emine Erdem respectively. During the webinar, members of AIDDA and KAGİDER discussed the ways in which Turkish and Italian entrepreneurs are planning to relaunch the economy after the pandemic.

Members from two businesswomen associations, mostly active in tourism and health sectors, shared their experiences and best cases during the Covid-19 period, together with their newly initiated projects to inspire further cooperation between Italy and Turkey.

National presidents of AIDDA and KAGIDER also “virtually” signed the Memorandum of Understanding to officialize cooperation and the beginning of a more intense dialogue. This will be the first step in a series of other collaborations with similar associations in Europe and in the world.

Özlem Dalga, BU MED Corporate Communications Manager, says: “Originally, this meeting was supposed to be in Trieste, however I am very glad that we were still able to bring these passionate women entrepreneurs from Turkey and Italy together anyhow. We truly believe that the “maritime bridge” which connects Turkey to the city of Trieste will get stronger with this cooperation. We also believe wholeheartedly that this meeting and DFDS Academy will support and empower women in business especially in tourism during the new normal.”

You can see the full webinar here.

The special moment where National presidents of KAGIDER and AIDDA, Emine Erdem (top) and Maria Claudia Torlasco Mastelli (at the bottom) respectively, “virtually” signed the Memorandum of Understanding.

Sustainable fuels: DFDS part of ambitious project

Today, DFDS, Copenhagen Airports, A.P. Moller – Maersk, DSV Panalpina, SAS and Ørsted informed the press about a unique partnership. The partnership’s vision is to develop a new ground-breaking hydrogen and e-fuel production facility in the Greater Copenhagen area as soon as 2023.

The project will require a large-scale supply of renewable electricity, which could potentially come from offshore wind power produced at Rønne Banke off the island of Bornholm.

When fully scaled-up by 2030, production would potentially be based on a total electrolyser capacity of 1.3 gigawatts, which would likely make it one of the world’s largest facilities of its kind. It could deliver more than 250,000 tonnes of sustainable fuel, which would reduce annual carbon emissions by 850,000 tonnes.

The project is supported by the Municipality of Copenhagen and could supply renewable hydrogen for zero-emission busses, heavy-duty trucks, renewable methanol for ships, and renewable jet fuel for airplanes.

Industrial-scale production to reduce costs
To become competitive with fossil fuels, the production of sustainable fuels will need to be built at industrial scale. For this to happen, governments and industry must come together to create a framework that incentivises private investments in large-scale sustainable fuel production.

The vision is to develop the project in three stages:

The first stage, which could be operational by 2023, comprises a 10MW electrolyser which can produce renewable hydrogen used directly to fuel busses and trucks.

Stage two comprises a 250MW electrolyser facility which could be operational by 2027 when the first offshore wind power from Bornholm could be delivered. This facility would produce renewable methanol for maritime transport and renewable jet-fuel for the aviation sector.

Stage three, which could be operational by 2030 would upgrade the project’s electrolyser capacity to 1.3GW and capture more sustainable CO2, enough to supply more than 250,000 tonnes of sustainable fuels.

“Sustainably produced hydrogen is the fundamental building block, and biggest cost driver of all the zero emission fuels. This project brings the scale that is needed in order to industrialise the production of green hydrogen, and thereby significantly reduce the cost of zero emission fuels for aviation, road transport and shipping. I really believe this is a strong step in the direction of a carbon neutral transport industry,” says Jakob Steffensen, Director of DFDS’ innovation department and DFDS’ member of the project group.

The partnership will now engage in dialogue with the regulatory authorities on the framework and policies needed to support the development of using sustainable fuels at scale in the transport sector in Denmark, and to seek public co-funding to conduct a full feasibility study of the project .

Torben Carlsen says: “The ability to establish a vision of an industrial-scale sustainable fuel production facility is due to the power of partnerships. The cooperation of fuel users and producers along with scientists and society is the fastest way to make sustainable fuels available as realistic alternatives to the fossil fuels we combust in our vehicles and vessels today. I hope that this partnership and our project will help us reach our goal of operating zero-emission ferries and trucks much faster than we had originally anticipated.”

See the full press release here.

Reducing energy consumption by retrofit

Victoria Seaways and two MR tankers from Hafnia and Maersk Tankers are part of Green Ship of the Future’s Retrofit project.

Green Ship of the Future has released a report to show how retrofitting can result in significant reduction of energy consumption decreasing fuel consumption and emissions on board three vessels including Victoria Seaways. According to the project findings, this can be achieved through technology that is available today with a return of investment of less than three years.

Last week, Green Ship of the Future released a report that explores how retrofitting and the addition of new technology to older systems, can significantly reduce energy consumption on Victoria Seaways and two vessels from Hafnia and Maersk Tankers.

The report finds that Victoria Seaways can potentially achieve up to 11.1% reduction of fuel consumption by implementing new and proven technology that is easily implemented such as new propellers and new hull coating exemplified by Hempel in this report. All the suggested solutions were calculated towards an estimated payback time of three years to show the potential of making a green investment in a manner that minimizes operational cost and improve the potential of profitability.

It is also worth mentioning that the report states that it was a challenge to identify fuel saving solutions with a payback of less than three years and acknowledges Victoria’s dedicated crew, Superintendent Sergej Duriagin and DFDS’ Technical Organization for their high focus on optimizing the fleet as many of the suggested solutions were already implemented.

Share solutions and inspire other vessels
Rune Jørgensen Daae, Project Superintendent, says: “Projects like this are welcome eyeopeners for potential retrofits that can lower our environmental impact and present a good business case.

“It is positive to see there are still large savings to be made. We must continue to optimise our vessels to become even more sustainable, reduce operational costs and stay competitive, but also to ease the change to alternative energy sources. We hope this project will bring concrete saving potentials and inspire others to optimise their vessels.”

For a more in-depth and detailed look – see the full report here.

DFDS Jubilee Fund supports colleagues in need

In 1916, DFDS celebrated its 50th anniversary by establishing the DFDS Jubilee Fund that financially supports employees of DFDS, former employees or the next of kin of deceased employees.

The support may also be granted to internal associations that support colleagues in need, or other associations with a relevance to DFDS.

Maximum support is DKK 50,000, and everyone in our network with a relationship to DFDS, as outlined above, may apply for support.

Online application
The applications will be considered twice a year by a board consisting of members of the Executive Management team.

As something new, the application form and all relevant information, including criteria for applying, deadlines and more can be found on under ‘About DFDS’ – or via this link: DFDS Jubilee Fund page

If you have any questions for the DFDS Jubilee Fund or making an application please contact

Survey to kick-off safety programme

Everyone working with freight operations on ships and at terminals will receive a questionnaire on safety standards in their workplace. The answers will be used as a basis for the programme that aims to make cargo operations safer. The survey is anonymous and will be sent to you via email from local HR or crewing from today.

As we wrote recently, we have experienced tragic fatalities in cargo operations at DFDS in recent months. “This is completely unacceptable, and therefore, we are now launching a programme to improve safety during cargo operations at terminals and onboard our ships,” says Torben Carlsen

The safety programme is managed by Michael Stig, Designated Person, for on-board safety, and by Jesper Hartvig Nielsen, Fleet Management, for safety ashore. They are now kicking off the programme with a safety survey.

Your opinion and ideas
Michael and Jesper say: “To start work, we really need the opinion and ideas of you who work with cargo operations at DFDS. Therefore, we have developed a survey, which we kindly ask everyone working at terminals or on board our ships to complete. This will help us understand better how we currently work with safety at DFDS, and how we can improve the safety for you and your colleagues.”

“There is no risk for you. The survey is completely anonymous. We cannot see name or email of the respondents, and the results will not be used to blame anyone. It will be used only to improve safety

You receive it via email
It is an online questionnaire, and you will receive a link to it in an email from crewing or HR today or soon after. Please complete it and help us make daily work more safe for the sake of you as well as your family.

You can also find the survey on the bottom of the Safety First site.

Climate FAQ now on

Poul Woodall, DFDS’ Director of Environment, answers your questions about our greenhouse gas reduction efforts with a FAQ on


Whereas our part of the world is facing a temporary slowdown, the long-term issues for our industry remains. A crucial element here, is the effort we put in to fighting climate change through greenhouse gas reduction efforts.

We have seen an increasing awareness among our business and leisure customers on climate gas issues and the flow of questions has been on the rise.

To improve our communication efforts in this area we have now launched a ‘greenhouse gas FAQ’ in the CSR section of Find it here.

On this page one will find the DFDS position to some commonly asked questions. We will naturally keep this page updated and try to ensure the most relevant questions are replied here.

We expect shortly to also include a ‘CO2 calculator’ which will provide the option of estimating the CO2 footprint for a transport in the DFDS network.

Any feedback and not least any suggestions for enhancing the list, ensuring it has the optimal value will be appreciated.

Reach out to the CSR team with your ideas.


Poul Woodall, DFDS’ Director of Environment

Part 2 of 3 – Interview with CPO Anne-Christine Ahrenkiel

As you may know, DFDS launched the Annual Report 2019 and the CSR Report 2019 on 24 February. The reports took lots of efforts to create, and fortunately they have been very well received externally.

In three interviews, CFO Karina Deacon, CPO Anne-Christine Ahrenkiel and Head of CSR Sofie Hebeltoft will share their thoughts about the reports, and they will explain what you can expect to find in the reports and why they might be interesting for you to read.

In this second interview, Anne-Christine will tell about the CSR Report 2019 and especially the People side of it.


All DFDS reports can be found here



Part 3 of 3 – Interview with Head of CSR Sofie Hebeltoft

As you may know, DFDS launched the Annual Report 2019 and the CSR Report 2019 on 24 February. The reports took lots of efforts to create, and fortunately they have been very well received externally.

In three interviews, CFO Karina Deacon, CPO Anne-Christine Ahrenkiel and Head of CSR Sofie Hebeltoft will share their thoughts about the reports, and they will explain what you can expect to find in the reports and why they might be interesting for you to read.

In this third interview, Sofie will tell about the CSR Report 2019 and especially the part about our environmental footprint.


All DFDS reports can be found here



Seven Sisters fitted with scrubber

Seven Sisters at Fayard Shipyard, Denmark. Her sister ship, Côte d’Albatre, will follow soon. Thank you to Peter Therkildsen for sharing the photo.

Until 15 March, Seven Sisters will be at the Fayard Shipyard in Denmark, where she will be fitted with a scrubber. Côte d’Albatre is next in line for the same procedure. Both ferries should be back in operation on the Newhaven – Dieppe route on 1 May.

Allan Lind Grodin, Project Manager and Naval Architect, Newbuilding & Major Conversions, says: “The new scrubbers will significantly improve the air quality in the local communities, in line with our CSR strategy with a focus on our environmental footprint. In addition, the shipyard also carried out regular maintenance, and installed a ballast water treatment system very similar to the one on board Regina Seaways.”

The odd ones out
Some of you may be wondering why Seven Sisters and Côte d’Albatre are in yellow livery, and branded Transmanche Ferries. Even though the two ferries are operated by DFDS, the French Government owns them and the Newhaven – Dieppe service, which DFDS operates on their behalf.

The colour scheme actually belongs to the Corsica Ferries–Sardinia Ferries ferry company. When the former ferry company Transmanche Ferries needed a ferry to operate the route in 2001, they chartered the ferry, Sardinia Vera, from Corsica Ferries–Sardinia Ferries, and retained the current colour scheme while rebranding her with the “T” on the hull.

In 2006, when Transmanche Ferries ordered the two newbuildings, Seven Sisters and Côte d’Albatre, they naturally decided to go with the same look. Despite LD Lines and subsequently DFDS taking over the service, the look has remained the same since the ships left the shipyard, Barreras, in Spain.

Eco-friendly ballast water on DFDS’ ships

Watch this video showing the installation of a new ballast water treatment system on Regina Seaways. Enjoy a tour of the 3D model environment and a time-lapse series of the yard installation.

As you may know, water is used as ballast on board ships to maintain safe operating conditions during a voyage by improving stability, reducing stress on the hull, and improving propulsion efficiency.

Last year, DFDS initiated a programme for installing ballast water treatment systems (BWTS) on all vessels in our fleet in order to support the marine environment and to comply with the international convention on ballast water management. The system prevents the spread of potentially invasive aquatic species through the use of ballast water on ships operating across different regions. This is done mechanically, using a combination of filtration and UV radiation to render the organisms non-viable.

For the last six months, the project team has been busy clarifying the batch 2020 ships’ system capacity needs, developing the new ship specific documentation, obtaining required approvals from the maritime authorities and planning the yard installations.

Jacob Johannesen, Project Manager & Naval Architect, Newbuilding & Major Conversions, says: “It is a challenging task to install the system with all its auxiliary components in an already-crowded machinery area. DFDS has teamed up with a design facility that uses a 3D scan of the relevant spaces to model the installation in a point cloud environment. This helps reduce the margin of error in the design and the installation time required.”

Five BWTS installations already in place

During the first two months of 2020, five BWTS installations have been made: Côte des Flandres, Regina Seaways, Dunkerque Seaways, Delft Seaways and Seven Sisters now all clean the water thoroughly before sending it back into the sea.

“Many colleagues within the organisation are involved with the programme during the different phases. However, a special thank-you must go to our good colleagues in Technical Organisation who are ensuring timely installations at the yard,” says Jacob.

Sofie Hebeltoft, Head of CSR, says: “Supporting the marine environment is part of our CSR strategy, and the installation of BWTS is an important part of this. It’s great to see how this is actually brought to life, both with the 3D simulation and the time-lapse film. Thank you to the team for sharing this with us.”

The programme will continue until end of 2024.

Poul Woodall wins award for sustainability efforts

After winning the Neptune award for being ‘The most devoted sustainability personality of the year’, Poul Woodall gives his perspective on working for greener shipping


On 26 February, Poul Woodall, DFDS’ Director of Environment & Sustainability, received the Neptune Award at the 2020 Greentech in Shipping event in Hamburg. He was voted ‘The most devoted sustainability personality of the year’, a title that he has now been awarded twice in a row. This is another achievement he can add to his crowded shelf space at DFDS’ headquarters in Copenhagen.

It comes as no surprise to his colleagues at DFDS that he won another award for his tireless efforts, and ‘devoted’ is certainly a fitting word to describe Poul. He was busy with meetings on day one of the event in Hamburg, so he joined on day two. Upon arrival he settled in for a day of discussions and panels and only looked at the card with the award nominations shortly before they began.

Poul was then very surprised to see his own name on the list of nominees. He was grateful when he was chosen to win by his industry peers in attendance, who discussed all sorts of innovation and green developments throughout the two-day event in Germany.

A portrait of Poul

In the maritime world it is remarkable to be as well known and well respected as Poul Woodall. However, this did not happen overnight. With a long career in international shipping, Poul has been dedicated to what he considers the biggest challenge since taking on his role as Director of Environment & Sustainability in 2013, namely protecting both the global and local environment to the best of our ability as our ships sail the trading lanes full of important goods and carry passengers everywhere.

Why is Poul a bit special in the maritime world and in the environmental fight? You could say that he leads the charge for the realistic and holistic way of seeing greener shipping take shape. He doesn’t just think of DFDS and where we operate. For Poul it’s the big picture that matters. He fights to pave the way forward and considers the need for change against the possibilities and limitations.

Poul says: “When we talk about being green or going zero emission in all sorts of ways, and everyone is excited about the next big thing, it’s in my nature to stop and think. When we pull at one end thinking that we are doing good, maybe something is happening at the other end which isn’t good at all. For example, when we can prevent emissions of NOx pollutants and that in turn causes greenhouse gases to be released into the atmosphere. So, I must consider which of these options is better for the environment, or if can we do something else.”

Poul (middle) joined Lucienne Damm (left), Senior Environmental Manager for TUI Cruises, in a panel to discuss what exactly makes a green ship,. The discussion was moderated by Frederik Schur Riis (right), Head of Green Ship of the Future.


“Some of the solutions we have today are temporary, and we can’t expect to rely on them forever. The most important thing, the really big problem, is the constant release of greenhouse gases. If we don’t come up with new technologies that make the world greener, if we can’t agree what “green” even means, and put a stop to our reliance on fossil fuels, we are in some trouble. But this just means that we have a lot of work to do.”

New HQ will be certified Gold for sustainable building

In 2022, our new headquarters in Copenhagen will stand ready for occupancy. The building will be owned by PensionDanmark with DFDS as contractual user.

PensionDanmark(PD) has very elaborate requirements for their sustainable building and construction projects. They must all be future proofed through flexible and high-quality solutions as well as low maintenance cost and energy consumption. To uphold and ensure the contribution to a sustainable future, all PD projects are required to be certified Gold in accordance with the DGNB certification system (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Nachhaltiges Bauen, German Sustainable Building Council in English). Our new Headquarters in Copenhagen will be certified Gold.

Michael Sandberg, Head of HR Operations, says: “The DGNB system makes sustainable construction applicable and measurable on a practical level making it comparable. It follows a scoring system that assesses ecological, economical and sociocultural factors. To achieve Gold, a lot of factors are planned into the process compared to the construction of a building complying with present building regulations. The DGNB system therefore works like a optimisation tool to ensure a thorough process regarding everything from planning, construction and actual use.”

Assessments of the DGNB score system revolve around these core sustainability factors.

Sofie Hebeltoft, Head of CSR, says: “I am very happy that we, together with PensionDanmark, NCC and PLH Architects, can showcase a construction process and a building in 2022, that will be in line with our CSR strategy leading towards reducing our environmental footprint and being a caring employer.

For example, all materials are produced under proper working conditions and are selected with consideration for environmental impact, low degassing and whether they can be recycled.

Being a good neighbor
“The process criteria also ensure the construction site is maintained properly, where dust, noise and vibrations are handled sensibly for the benefit of the neighbors and construction workers. It is NCC that runs the site where resident’s meetings are also conducted to inform the local community about the construction. We are equally happy to see that NCC also accepted several apprenticeships to help with the construction showing support for the educational development within our society,” says Sofie.

Efficient maintenance and operation
“Factors like energy, indoor climate, waste, use of utility water, climate proofing and the measurement of consumption are all incorporated early in the planning, so that all parameters interplay and do not conflict with one another. For example, we ensure a low energy consumption by keeping out heat from the sun via solid isolation, automatic window blinds, window filters as well as an air condition system with very low air velocity. Solar panels on the roof and a bio tank that will produce biogas from leftover food will also contribute to generation of energy.”

The setting for a great workplace
“With an open café on the ground floor, terraces in front of the canteen, fitness area in the basement and a lot of meeting rooms in different sizes, there will be plenty of room to socialize and contribute to a good work environment. All this with great acoustic conditions via various décor to diffuse sound and the installation of silencing windows.”

These are just some of the very few examples of the sustainable initiatives, however, the Gold certification only ensures the right setting for a sustainable building and workplace. We have the responsibility to carry on this approach and ensure that we also incorporate high levels of sustainability when we design our way of working within the building. How we can behave and what initiatives will be available in order to achieve this will be touched upon on the Bridge at a later stage.”

Rescuing abandoned pets in Calais

Hear the story of César and the partnership with animal rescue LPA.


A partnership between DFDS and animal rescue charity LPA (Ligue de Protection des Animaux du Calais) in Calais helps animals left behind at the terminal. This greatly improves the rate and speed of adoption to avoid pets becoming strays.

Many animals, especially dogs, are sadly each year left behind by their owners at the Calais terminal, often because of problems with paperwork or vaccinations. Yaneth, Adam and their Boxer dog, Columbo, recently had trouble with their pet passport and received a helping hand from DFDS, but sometimes the misfortune is not solved, and an animal is left behind. One of them, German Shepherd César, was abandoned at Calais Port.

Watch the video for César’s story and see how the partnership with LPA works. It all came about after a DFDS member of staff in Calais became increasingly concerned about the fate of pets abandoned at Calais.

DFDS staff at the terminal have even taken abandoned pets home rather than see them become strays. One of the operations co-ordinators at Calais, Mélanie Declercq, decided to try to find a more practical solution, which is already making a difference.

Florent Dagbert, general manager of the LPA, Calais, says the DFDS partnership has meant they are able to help pets much more effectively: “Because they already have papers, the animals do not have to be kept in quarantine, isolated from people and other dogs, for months. The partnership with DFDS allows us to adopt animals more quickly and easily.”

Power-to-X conference on board Pearl Seaways

Key players in industry joined DFDS to discuss green shipping fuels


Power-to-X is about finding the synergies and creating the scale for turning green electricity into affordable fuel for the shipping industry.

For this purpose, shipping companies, the energy sector, and dozens of other experts joined DFDS in a conference on board Pearl Seaways in Copenhagen harbour on 30 January.

When we announced the conference last month, Jakob Steffensen, Head of Innovation and Partnerships at DFDS, explained what we aim to do with key players such as Maersk, Ørsted, Siemens A/S, Danish Ship Finance and Dansk Energi.

DFDS’ CFO Karina Deacon introduced the conference with some important words: “Over the next six hours you will be discussing solutions for a green transition for shipping. You are gathered here today to do something about it. Those solutions will be necessary for us to renew the maritime and maritime supply industries. We need to become climate friendly to stay relevant in the future, to maintain our businesses and the many jobs we provide.”

Why ammonia is so interesting

“Ammonia can be made from air, water and green electricity. It doesn’t add CO2 to the atmosphere when burned, and power-to-ammonia can be done with high total energy efficiency. Yes, it is toxic and smelly, requiring dedicated precautions, but there is so much potential in this carbon-free molecule as a fuel, that we must take this potential pathway very seriously,” says Tue Johannesen, Senior Innovation Portfolio Manager at Maersk.

Ammonia is already developed to a practical state that can be used by ships, with the three related factors of cost, scale and demand recognised as the key drivers by the conference speakers. Converting green energy such as wind power into hydrogen and ammonia is a viable way of achieving the scale, where costs become viable for industry.

It’s also a chicken and egg situation in terms of what comes first, the demand for the fuel from the industry, or the fuel provided by the energy sector.

Jakob Steffensen said: “The biggest issue is the price gap between black and green energy – it’s much easier to go green if the two meet. We need to learn fast in order to make the right strategic decisions. That’s why this day is all about partnerships, so we can share knowledge, discuss the barriers we need to cross, and drive innovation together.”

DFDS and Karina Deacon thanked the day’s participants: “We owe you our gratitude for being here today. Thank you for sharing your technologies, knowledge and experiences.”

The day brought us great insight from the speakers, with difficult questions and lively discussions throughout. Pearl Seaways provided a great venue, many thanks to the staff on board for hosting all our guests.

Anders Nordstrøm, VP and Head of Hydrogen at Ørsted

Jakob Steffensen, Head of Innovation & Partnerships at DFDS

Claus Møller, CEO at Siemens A/S and Head of Siemens Smart Infrastructure

Majbrit Hoppe, Business Developer at Funen’s Maritime Cluster

Crown Seaways ready for shore power

Crown Seaways at Fayard Shipyard. Photo taken by Peter Therkildsen

The Copenhagen – Oslo route has just taken another step towards a more sustainable power supply when in port.

Throughout January, Crown Seaways was on an extended New Year break as she was drydocked at the Fayard Shipyard in Denmark. The dry docking was in line with planned maintenance and a major refurbishment investment to improve Crown’s facilities. This included updating the restaurants and bars, public areas and cabins with a fresh, new look. As planned, Crown also had the fittings installed to enable the ship to receive power from shore.

Kim Heiberg, Route Director, says: “Crown Seaways is now ready to connect to the shore-power facilities in Oslo and shut down the auxiliary engines while in port as soon as the connections are made to the ship. Pearl Seaways was fitted out for this in January 2019, and is already receiving shore power in Oslo.

“I am also pleased about the agreement we signed with Copenhagen Malmö Port in October, according to which they will establish shore-power connections in Copenhagen. Construction is scheduled to start in 2020. When this is ready, both ships will receive power from shore in both ports.

“We get daily questions from our passengers about what we are doing for the environment, and now we show in a very visible way that we care and do something about it. It has also been a wish among our neighbours in Copenhagen for a long time.”

DFDS signs gender equality charter

Transport and shipping are male dominated industries and even though things have improved in recent years, there is still a significant lack of female employees and leaders.

DFDS is getting closer with 29% women in positions ashore and 18% at sea. However, there is still a significant lack of women in leading positions, even though the Executive Management Team has become more balanced recently.

There is a strong will to increase the share of women. Therefore, DFDS, along with other Danish shipping companies, signed a charter that obliges the companies to actively focus on gender equality. And this is not because it looks nice on paper:

“We need to do something about this to become a better company that makes better decisions. All research documents that you need to reach a level where the underrepresented gender makes out a third of the team before you get equal and balanced discussions,” says Torben Carlsen.

“We need to attract more of the female talents from other industries. Today, they usually do not choose a maritime career,” he says.

“I am very happy about the charter. I think we are doing a lot at DFDS. Diversity is a corner stone in our CSR strategy that is supported by the Executive Management Team and the Board of Directors. How to improve the gender was a key issue at the recent Annual Management Conference and VP seminars, and recently, all VP’s have developed 3 years plan for how to improve diversity in general, in their organisations. It doesn’t change overnight, but when the entire shipping community pushes the agenda, it will certainly speed up development,” says Sofie Hebeltoft, Director of our CSR department

“The charter is very good news. I believe that with gender equality at the top of the shipping community’s agenda, it will send a strong signal and invitation to female talents that they are wanted in our business and that we can offer them a great work environment and prosperous career opportunities,” says Anne-Christine Ahrenkiel, Chief People Officer, EVP.

Watch Danish Shipping’s video about gender equality here.

See Danish Shipping’s charter here.