Transportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment
Abstract The general rise in marine fuel prices in combination with ever-more stringent environmental regulations resulting from IMO conventions and EU Directives have become the main industry drivers for seaborne transportation to become cleaner and more energy efficient. Compliance with existing and soon-to-be-enacted regulations requires evaluating the trade-off between often-conflicting options to select the best available technology or fuel source. Although the traditional way of dealing with this issue has been to apply a cost benefit analysis, this kind of analysis does not adequately consider the complexities of the problem, such as incorporating linguistic preferences or interrelations amongst attributes, experts and their preferences. The challenge in such an analysis corresponds to that of a multiple attribute decision-making problem in which a finite number of alternatives are assessed with regards to a finite number of attributes and experts and ranked from the best to the worst. In this paper, a comprehensive and holistic decision-making framework is proposed to overcome the barriers of cost-benefit analysis techniques, facilitating the inclusion of all possible combinations of decision-making parameters and their discrete values, which will eventually help the industry achieve cleaner seaborne transportation. To demonstrate the applicability of the proposed framework, this paper focuses on a real-life study case involving an environmental compliance problem in the Port of Copenhagen, Denmark, in relation to a particular EU Directive. In conclusion, the proposed framework can be applied as a generalised decision-making model to similar compliance issues encountered within other modes of transportation such as rail and road.