Shipping is an old industry the purpose of which is to carry the trade of the World. Over 90% of World trade goes by sea. It is carried in the form of crude oil in vast oil tankers, as iron ore in huge bulk carriers and as finished goods in containerships. From your shoelaces to your iPad, everything has spent at least part of its time being carried in the hold of a ship.
Shipping is also the most environmentally friendly form of transport. Greenhouse gas emissions are much lower than for all other forms of transport. Shipping, although any oil pollution is deeply regrettable, is a minor source of oil pollution. Furthermore, there is an international consensus driving ship design to further reduce accidental oil spillage. In comparison to other transport modes, one of the best ways to improve the environment is to move more trade by sea. This would also assist in removing trucks from the road so reducing road congestion.
The ability to carry large quantities of raw materials and finished goods at very low cost, has facilitated the process of globalisation. Television sets made in one country can be sold cheaply in another only because it costs around £5 to transport them by sea. Similarly, a bottle of Whisky, distilled in the Western Isles of Scotland, costs as little as 10 pence to transport to Japan. However, this trade is reliant upon the skills and experience of the highly trained Master Mariners and their crew. Their abilities are used to guide these massive ships carefully and skilfully around the navigational hazards found within the Worlds’ Oceans. The Master Mariner is a skilled professional whose job it is to protect the environment, care for the safety of their passengers and crews and ensure the proper safekeeping of their cargoes.