HullWiper | How to embrace sustainable practices in shipping

Doing good is good for business

11 May 2021

11 May21 Doing good is good for business Option 2

The drive to create sustainable supply chains is booming with even large corporations such as The Coca-Cola Company putting competition aside to partner with brands like Unilever, Anheuser-Busch InBev and more for collective sustainable change through initiatives like the 100+ Accelerator - a global incubator program that aims to solve key supply chain challenges across water stewardship, sustainable agriculture, and climate action. Why? Because doing good is good for business and the environment.

Consumers and businesses are becoming increasingly aware of how their purchases impact the environment and it’s starting to change the way they buy. Research shows that customers are not only building brand trust with companies who pledge sustainability commitments but loyalty and buying preference too.

Many companies are now looking to purchase more sustainable products the same way that consumers are and it all starts with taking responsibility for their supply chains.


Over 90 percent of global trade is carried across the world’s oceans by roughly 93,000 commercial vessels. Like other modes of transport that use fossil fuels, ships produce carbon dioxide emissions that contribute significantly to global climate change. Besides carbon dioxide, ships also carry and release other ecologically harmful pollutants along their voyage.

Vessel emissions are also catching the eye of global societies such as the International Maritime Organization (IMO) as they continue to push for the carbon intensity of international shipping to decline, currently targeting a 50% reduction in emissions by 2050 compared to 2008.

Being ahead of the curve is usually an advantage over competition which means investing in green shipping practices now could lead to a prosperous future.

Carbon emissions and energy efficiency run in parallel with the accumulation of fouling on ship hulls. Fouling is the build-up of barnacles, algae and small creatures on vessel hulls that add significant drag to the ship and ultimately cause a loss in speed. To compensate for the frictional resistance and to keep to schedule, ships are forced to increase power resulting in increased fuel consumption and carbon emissions.

A simple way ship owners and operators can commit to reducing emissions is by scheduling regular vessel hull cleanings for their fleets.

Although divers using karts or brushes and water jets hull cleaning methods might serve the same purpose, not all are created “green” i.e. they do not provide an equal, high-quality service. Here’s why:

Diver + Kart/Brush Hull Cleaning

  • Removes 10 – 30% of costly antifouling coatings
  • Thruster force against hull varies from diver to diver
  • Brushes abrade the anti-fouling surface, causing grooves that can promote regrowth of fouling
  • The involvement of a diver increases the risk to human life

Water Jet Hull Cleaning

  • Leaves the antifouling system intact throughout the cleaning
  • Consistent thruster force and distance
  • Water pressure used as a cleaning medium creates no groove on the hull surface
  • No risk to human life

HullWiper’s Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) technology offers all the advantages of water jet hull cleaning plus additional environmentally beneficial features not available on any other hull cleaning ROV.


HullWiper’s advanced technology saves you not only time and money but the marine environment too. Here’s a closer look at HullWiper’s benefits:

Long-lasting Clean:

HullWiper’s ROV cleans 96 – 97% of submerged areas that lasts 2 - 3 times longer when compared with brushes. This means a lighter, more efficient vessel in the long run.

Cost Savings:

Efficient cleaning ensures the vessel is performing optimally with no additional drag, shrinking the possibility of additional fuel costs to a minimum.

Cleaning with HullWiper also means 25 - 50% more savings to coating costs between dry dockings over traditional cleaning.


HullWiper’s smart ROV technology requires no divers throughout the hull cleaning process with the device operator working either onshore or on a service boat during a clean.

No Downtime:

No divers are used meaning cleanings can occur day or night, in most weather conditions and whilst cargo or bunker fuels operations are underway.


Also known as Invasive Aquatic Species (IAS), fouling can often disrupt and threaten the livelihoods of local fauna and flora as they enter new territory while attached to vessels. HullWiper’s unique on-board filter system captures all removed residue during the clean to ensure no threat to marine life. Removed fouling is then disposed of onshore through an approved environmental waste company.

Adjustable Speed:

High-speed seawater jets with adjustable nozzle pressure means HullWiper can operate at variable speeds to suit all types of coatings.

A ship cleaned with HullWiper can reduce a vessel’s annual carbon footprint and fuel savings of almost USD 1 million per year at current prices (USD 650/tonne). Don’t believe us? Gain access to our FREE Fuel Savings Calculator here to find out how much your fleet could be saving.

HullWiper’s hull cleaning services are available in ports around the world including Australia, Denmark, Egypt, Gibraltar, Mauritius, Namibia, Qatar, UAE, Norway, Panama, Singapore, Sweden and most recently in South Korea and Sri Lanka.

Visit our website or contact our experts at [email protected] for more information!