As investment guru Sir John Templeton famously said: "The four most expensive words in the English language are: 'This time it's different.'"

Shipping's history is littered with the financial skeletons of entrepreneurs who rashly thought they could beat the market in the next cycle and extract an extra cent or two on the dollar from shippers.

But this time things may indeed be different, with shipping's customers showing an appetite to pay a marginal premium to help clean up the carbon pollution the industry produces.