Marine Transportation

Select Language
Current language: English
Marine Transportation industry entities provide deep-sea, coastal or river-way freight shipping services. The industry is of strategic importance to international trade, and its revenues are tied to macroeconomic cycles. Important activities include transportation of containerised and bulk freight, including consumer goods and a wide range of commodities, and transportation of chemicals and petroleum products in tankers. Because of the industry's global scope, entities may operate under many diverse applicable jurisdictional legal and regulatory frameworks.

Relevant Issues (6 of 26)

Why are some issues greyed out? The SASB Standards vary by industry based on the different sustainability-related risks and opportunities within an industry. The issues in grey were not identified during the standard-setting process as the most likely to be useful to investors, so they are not included in the Standard. Over time, as the ISSB continues to receive market feedback, some issues may be added or removed from the Standard. Each company determines which sustainability-related risks and opportunities are relevant to its business. The Standard is designed for the typical company in an industry, but individual companies may choose to report on different sustainability-related risks and opportunities based on their unique business model.

Disclosure Topics

What is the relationship between General Issue Category and Disclosure Topics? The General Issue Category is an industry-agnostic version of the Disclosure Topics that appear in each SASB Standard. Disclosure topics represent the industry-specific impacts of General Issue Categories. The industry-specific Disclosure Topics ensure each SASB Standard is tailored to the industry, while the General Issue Categories enable comparability across industries. For example, Health & Nutrition is a disclosure topic in the Non-Alcoholic Beverages industry, representing an industry-specific measure of the general issue of Customer Welfare. The issue of Customer Welfare, however, manifests as the Counterfeit Drugs disclosure topic in the Biotechnology & Pharmaceuticals industry.
General Issue Category
(Industry agnostic)

Disclosure Topics (Industry specific) for: Marine Transportation

GHG Emissions
  • Greenhouse Gas Emissions

    Marine transportation entities generate emissions mainly from the combustion of diesel in ship engines. The industry’s reliance on heavy fuel oil (‘bunker fuel’) is of material concern because of rising fuel costs and intensifying greenhouse gas (GHG) regulations. The industry is among the most fuel efficient of the major transportation modes in terms of fuel use per tonne shipped. However, because of the industry’s size, its contribution to the global GHG emissions is still significant. Recent environmental regulations are encouraging the adoption of more fuel-efficient engines and the use of cleaner-burning fuels. Fuel constitutes a major expense for industry players, providing a further incentive for investing in upgrades or retrofits to boost fuel efficiency.
Air Quality
  • Air Quality

    Air pollutants such as sulphur oxides (SO?), nitrogen oxides (NO?) and particulate matter (PM10) are significant environmental externalities from the use of fossil fuels by marine shipping entities. These pollutants tend to have localised environmental and health impacts and are especially a concern at port cities. Air pollution regulations are encouraging the adoption of more fuel-efficient engines and the use of cleaner-burning fuels as entities seek to reduce exposure to fines and environmental remediation costs. A further fuel efficiency incentive is that fuel constitutes a major expense for the industry, so capital expenditures to upgrade vessels may be offset over the long term from fuel costs savings.
Ecological Impacts
  • Ecological Impacts

    The operations and waste disposal practices of marine transportation entities may create substantial environmental externalities, such as water pollution and damage to marine life. Seagoing vessels routinely discharge ballast water, bilge water and untreated sewage. Compliance with international regulations intended to manage the ecological impacts of operation may require significant capital expenditures to upgrade or instal waste management systems. Illegal bilge water dumping and other unregulated discharges may result in hefty fines, negatively affecting an entity’s risk profile. Operating in areas of protected conservation status, such as Emission Control Areas (ECAs) and Particularly Sensitive Sea Areas (PSSAs), may increase the risk of ecological impacts as well as the risk of violating environmental regulations.
Employee Health & Safety
  • Workforce Health & Safety

    Marine transportation workers face dangers such as hazardous weather and exposure to large machinery and heavy cargo. The greatest health and safety risks occur during loading and unloading cargo at ports. Ships must be loaded and unloaded quickly and on schedule, increasing injury risk, fatigue and stress. The health and well-being of workers in the industry also is linked inextricably to entity safety performance since a healthy crew is necessary for safe voyages. Entities with inadequate safety management systems that fail to ensure crew health and safety may witness increased employee turnover and worker-related expenses, including medical expenses such as insurance premiums and worker pay-outs.
Business Ethics
  • Business Ethics

    Port facilitation payments are considered standard business practice in some countries to obtain permits, cargo clearance and port berths. However, anti-bribery laws place pressure on marine transportation entities to alter this practice. Enforcement of these laws may result in significant one-time costs and higher compliance costs and increased cost of capital, or affect an entity’s social licence to operate. Entity governance must monitor for and prevent corruption, participation—whether wilful or unintentional—in illegal or unethical payments, or the exertion of unfair influence. Operating in corruption-prone countries may exacerbate these risks.
Critical Incident Risk Management
  • Accident & Safety Management

    Accidents or leaks involving large vessels can have significant impacts on life, property and the environment. Negative media attention and significant clean-up costs may impair an entity’s finances. To reduce the risk of accidents, entities conduct extensive safety measures, such as employee training programmes, periodic dry-docking maintenance periods and annual class-renewal surveys conducted by classification societies. The global marketplace’s reliance on the shipping industry means that voyages must be made within precise timeframes, providing further accident prevention incentives.

Select up to 4 industries

Current Industry:
Marine Transportation
Consumer Goods
Extractives & Minerals Processing
Food & Beverage
Health Care
Renewable Resources & Alternative Energy
Resource Transformation
Technology & Communications

Tell Us About Yourself

While it’s free to download SASB Standards, we request the following information to better understand how the Standards are being used.

Content Use Policy

The SASB Standards are made available for free for non-commercial use, such as corporate disclosure. The content in the SASB Standards is copyrighted. All rights reserved. Commercial use of the content in the SASB Standards – including for investment analysis, data services, and product development - is not permitted without consent. To request more information, please contact us at: [email protected].

Stay Informed: Please tick the below boxes to subscribe to specific email updates. The IFRS Foundation is committed to protecting and respecting your privacy, and we’ll only use your personal information to administer your account and to provide the products and services you requested from us.

You can unsubscribe from these communications at any time. For more information on how to unsubscribe, our privacy practices, and how we are committed to protecting and respecting your privacy, please review our Privacy Policy.

By clicking submit below, you consent to allow the IFRS Foundation to store and process the personal information submitted above to provide you the content requested.

We encourage you to visit the IFRS Foundation notification dashboard to register for an account and sign up for additional email subscriptions you may be interested in, such as notifications about the ISSB and the IFRS Sustainability Disclosure Standards.