Each year we publish an ESG report, in which we endeavor to identify the levers that we, as a company, can pull in order to continue to translate environmental sensitivity, social responsibility, and good governance into specific actions. To this end, periodically we enlist the help of our core stakeholders including customers, employees, investors, financiers, suppliers, and industry bodies to gauge the materiality of the many different facets of ESG and guide us in plotting a strategic roadmap to address them. To help drive this process, and to ensure that ESG becomes increasingly embedded in our company culture and the way we do business, we have a specialized ESG committee at the Board level.
The container shipping industry links producers and consumers of goods, thereby facilitating economic growth. Container shipping is a key part of the global supply chain and, as such, is also a contributor to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals - particularly those associated with poverty alleviation, economic growth, and infrastructure.
Shipping also represents a low carbon form of transportation, especially when compared to emissions associated with moving comparable volumes of cargo over the equivalent distances using other common modes of freight transport: approximately 50x lower than air freight, 4x lower than road, and 3x lower than rail. It is estimated that 80% of global trade is carried by sea.
However, that is not to understate the magnitude of the challenges we need to address going forward, arguably the most critical of which is to play a role in the global effort to tackle Climate Change and create a sustainable environment for our children.
Reducing the carbon footprint of the global supply chain is growing in both importance and emphasis. The associated regulatory environment is evolving fast, as are commercial pressures, reporting and disclosure requirements, and the priorities of our shareholders, financiers, and broader stakeholders. Further details are provided in our ESG reports.
Our fleet is focused upon mid-sized and smaller container ships, with capacity weighted towards Post-Panamax (wide beam) vessels. The latter combine a high level of operational flexibility with comparatively low costs and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions per cargo slot: aligning our commercial interests with a reduced emissions footprint. Our environmental and commercial strategies are aligned by taking a full life-cycle approach to the carbon footprint of ships: considering the impact of building and recycling ships, as well as operating them. We see expanding the economic life and optimizing the operation of existing ships, until next-generation sustainable fuels and propulsion technologies become well-established, commercially available, and economically viable, as being both environmentally sensible and financially prudent.
We are members of the Getting to Zero Coalition, signatories to the Call to Action for Shipping Decarbonization, and are committed to achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050.
These are complex times, and the challenges we must collectively face, together with the nature of ESG itself, will continue to evolve. We are committed to continuous improvement and to ensuring that Global Ship Lease creates sustainable value over the long term.