The flexible solution for LNG ship bunkering
In recent years there has been a significant acceleration in orders for ships able to use liquefied natural gas (LNG) as fuel.
According to DNV GL, the number of LNG-powered ships that sail the seas by 2018 will double compared to about 50 units in service today. Earlier this year, in fact, already commissioned projects and over between 2014 and 2018 counted 53 ships destined largely for Northern European and North American owners. If you look at the medium term, it is expected to further acceleration that pushes the classification company to provide 1,000 LNG-fueled ships in operation by 2020.
The drivers behind this trend is essentially represented by the evolution of environmental regulations agreed within the International Maritime Organization and the European Union, which provide for the progressive reduction of air pollutant emissions from ships, and the prospects for the medium long term on the availability and cost of natural gas at the international level. Since January 1, 2015, in a controlled emission areas (ECA: Baltic Sea, English Channel, North Sea, North America, Caribbean Sea) the limits on sulfur content in marine fuels will drop to 0.1% (from 1 %), while in other EU seas from 1 January 2020 will drop to 0.5% (from 3.5%).
Zone ECA – Emission Controlled Area
If a port hub is able to provide an innovative marine fuel at advantageous conditions, there is an increased convenience for the logistic operators to move the center of gravity of part of their lines.
In front of the expansion of the world fleet powered by LNG, initiatives for the development of bunkering infrastructure in Italian ports become essential.
Much can still be done: the ports can be one of the hubs around which to reorganize and redefine the competitiveness of the national productive system through its environmental and economic advantages of LNG. The promotion, development of ports and their full infrastructure for LNG, are the essential preconditions for growth, and the hoped-for creation of a national system of LNG storage.
On the basis of acquired technology and proven experience in the LNG industry, the E² Energy is proposed as a key driver for the study, design and construction of LNG facility for marine bunkers ranging from coastal depot at bunkering operating system.
The supply of LNG to ships can be through:
Within the port abutments it must be made a special LNG loading station which can be powered by a dedicated pipeline cryogenic derived from one of the main dock platform and from the storage tanks system. Also from cryogenic tanks you can supply LNG tankers at a specific loading dock adjacent to the dedicated area of the plant tanks.