Seafarers are worried about the impact of decarbonisation on their mental health, and fear being blamed if things go wrong.

Survey results published by the International Seafarers’ Welfare & Assistance Network and supported by the Shipowners’ Club reveal how the green transition is affecting job satisfaction.

While the study found that overall seafarers support decarbonisation, they reported increased stress, fatigue and fears of potential criminalisation due to the complexities of current and future reporting requirements.

Concerns loomed larger with engineers than deck officers.

The report says the industry needs to address the impact of decarbonisation with crew sizes to reflect new workloads.

It also wants greater recognition of the psychological impacts of rapid change and the technologies being deployed.

It called for protection against technostress in system designs by ensuring that new technologies, systems and processes all “function in a cohesive, joined-up and accessible way”.

“Only too often, seafarers tell us that they feel their wellbeing is overlooked in favour of commercial imperatives or regulatory requirements,” said ISWAN chief executive Simon Grainge.

“By engaging with their concerns about decarbonisation, maritime employers have the opportunity to empower seafarers to be proponents and drivers of the journey towards zero carbon, rather than this becoming another factor that risks driving them out of the sector.”

The survey, conducted between July and September 2023, received 400 responses from seafarers of 29 nationalities.