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Argus Media: Singapore eyes growing role in alternative marine fuels

Singapore is looking to play a bigger role in the alternative marine fuels industry, ahead of the first methanol bunkering operations scheduled later this year, according to Argus Media.




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Singapore is looking to play a bigger role in the alternative marine fuels industry, ahead of the first methanol bunkering operations scheduled for this year's third quarter.

26 May 2023

"Green" methanol is regarded by some industry participants as the most viable renewable fuel that could enable the shipping industry to meet the International Maritime Organisation's emissions targets for 2050.

Trading firm Trafigura sees potential in marine fuels derived from green hydrogen such as methanol and ammonia, while Shell also sees "more sophisticated biofuels" such as bio-methanol, to be a longer term decarbonisation pathway.

Europe and the Americas have already made significant headway in this area, with ports in Europe readying themselves to operate methanol ship-to-ship bunkering, while Trinidad and Tobago is looking to develop a methanol bunkering facility.

Joint venture Proman Stena Bulk completed the first barge-to-ship methanol bunkering operation on the US Gulf coast earlier this year. Canada's Methanex and Japanese shipping company Mitsui OSK Lines also completed a vessel voyage from Geismar, Louisiana to Antwerp, Belgium on bio-methanol.

While the uptake of alternative marine fuels in Asia has been slower, Singapore has taken steps in developing the sector.

The Singapore-based Global Centre for Maritime Decarbonisation completed two bunkering trials with different supply chains of biofuels in February 2023. The trials utilised used cooking oil methyl ester (Ucome) blended with very-low sulphur fuel oil and Ucome blended with high-sulphur fuel oil.

The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) organised a workshop for hazard identification and operations during 18-19 May 2023, aimed at ensuring the safe handling of methanol fuel in Singapore. 

More than 40 participants from various methanol bunkering partners attendance, representing "a key milestone for MPA to ensure that Singapore is ready for methanol bunkering", it said.

The MPA last year developed a provisional national quality standard for marine biofuels, as well as a framework outlining conditions for biofuel supplies for licensed bunker fuel suppliers.

Favoured location

Singapore remains a favoured location for bunkers and has made progress in supplying alternative fuels, the MPA announced earlier this year. The city-state registered 47.9mn t of bunker sales in 2022. While total volumes fell by 4.3pc from a year earlier it included about 140,000t of biofuel blends over more than 90 biofuel bunkering operations, which surpassed the 16,000t in LNG bunker sales.

The marine fuels sector offers potential methanol demand growth in the coming years, with consumption from other derivative chemical sectors becoming stagnant.

By Sean Zhuang, Leanne Tan, Ryan Ang and Luis Gronda

Related: SMW 2023: Methanol-based spill scenario organised for ICOPCE table-top exercise
Related: MPA organises workshop on safe handling of methanol bunker fuel in Singapore
Related: Singapore: Golden Island Diesel Oil Trading to start methanol bunkering operations at republic by 2026


Photo credit and source: Argus Media
Published: 26 May, 2023

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Singapore: EPS orders ammonia, LNG dual-fuel vessels from China

EPS signed one contract for a series of ammonia dual-fuel bulk carriers with CSSC Beihai Shipbuilding and another for a series of LNG dual-fuel oil tankers with CSSC Guangzhou Shipbuilding International.






Singapore-based Eastern Pacific Shipping (EPS) on Wednesday (28 February) said it signed two new contract orders in a signing ceremony in Shanghai, one for a series of ammonia dual-fuel bulk carriers with CSSC Beihai Shipbuilding and another for a series of LNG dual-fuel oil tankers with CSSC Guangzhou Shipbuilding International. 

The contracts signed cover four 210,000 dwt ammonia dual-fuel bulk carriers and two 111,000 dwt LNG dual-fuel LR2 oil tankers, expanding our fleet of green vessels on water. 

“These are pivotal for EPS, testament to our continued commitment towards the decarbonisation of shipping,” EPS said in a social media post.

Manifold Times recently reported EPS signing a contract for its first ever wind-assisted propulsion system, partnering with bound4blue to install three 22-metre eSAILs® onboard the Pacific Sentinel

The turnkey ‘suction sail’ technology, which drags air across an aerodynamic surface to generate exceptional propulsive efficiency, will be fitted later this year, helping the 183-metre, 50,000 DWT oil and chemical tanker reduce overall energy consumption by approximately 10%, depending on vessel routing.

Related: Singapore: EPS orders its first wind-assisted propulsion system for tanker


Photo credit: Eastern Pacific Shipping
Published: 1 March 2024

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LNG Bunkering

Malaysia: Port of Tanjung Pelepas completes first LNG bunkering operation

Landmark event involved the CMA CGM Monaco, a 14,024 TEUs containership operated by French shipping giant CMA CGM.






Editor's note: The following article was edited on 4 March 2023 to correct PTP press release's description of CMA CGM Monaco.

Port of Tanjung Pelepas Sdn Bhd (PTP), a joint venture between MMC Group and APM Terminals, on Wednesday (28 February) announced a significant milestone with the successful completion of its first Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) bunkering operation. 

The landmark event involved the CMA CGM Monaco, a 14,024 TEUs (Twenty-foot Equivalent Units) capacity containership a 2024-built vehicle carrier operated by French shipping giant, CMA CGM.

Tan Sri Che Khalib Mohamad Noh, Chairman of PTP in a statement remarked this latest milestone demonstrates PTP’s commitment to continuously enhance its competitive advantages in an increasingly competitive global market.

“The successful completion of our first LNG bunkering operation also underscores our unwavering commitment to sustainability and environmental leadership. We are proud to partner with Petronas Trading Corporation Sendirian Berhad (PETCO) and CMA CGM on this initiative and showcase PTP’s capabilities as a leading facilitator of clean and efficient maritime operations.”

“This milestone paves the way for further growth in LNG bunkering at PTP, contributing significantly to the decarbonisation of the maritime industry.”

Commenting on this achievement, Mark Hardiman, Chief Executive Officer of PTP stated this latest milestone further highlights PTP’s position as the largest transshipment hub terminal in Malaysia.

“In preparation for the LNG bunkering operation, PTP worked closely since March 2022 with PETCO and CMA CGM, as well as with various other related government agencies to organise table-top exercises (TTX) and workshops, before carrying out the deployment exercise.”

“The success of the bunkering operation is a result of the seamless collaboration and preparations involving rigorous safety procedures through in-depth operational and risk assessments, modelling, and validation. We thank PETCO, CMA CGM all other involved parties for their joint efforts in operationalising the bunkering capability and we welcome partners to work with us to accelerate maritime decarbonisation,” said Hardiman.

Port of Tanjung Pelepas (PTP) is Malaysia’s largest transshipment hub with the capacity to handle 13 million TEUs annually. The port delivers reliable, efficient, and advanced services to major shipping lines and box operators, providing shippers in Malaysia and abroad with extensive connectivity to the global market. PTP is currently ranked 15th among the world top container ports.


Photo credit: Port of Tanjung Pelepas
Published: 1 March 2024

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Alternative Fuels

Wallenius Wilhelmsen to order four additional methanol DF PCTCs

Newbuilds will also be ammonia-ready and able to be converted as soon as ammonia becomes available in a safe and secure way.





Wallenius Wilhelmsen PCTC order

Roll-on/roll-off (Ro-Ro) shipping company Wallenius Wilhelmsen on Tuesday (27 February) declared options to build four additional next-generation Shaper Class pure car and truck carrier (PCTC) vessels.

The 9,300 CEU methanol dual fuel vessels can utilise alternative fuel sources, such as methanol, upon delivery. They will also be ammonia-ready and able to be converted as soon as ammonia becomes available in a safe and secure way.

“Together with our customers we are committed to further shaping our industry and accelerating towards net zero. These new vessels are a vital part of that journey,” says Xavier Leroi, EVP & COO Shipping Services.

This latest commitment brings the total number of Shaper Class vessels currently on order with Jinling Shipyard (Jiangsu) to eight. Wallenius Wilhelmsen also retains further options.

The first of the Shaper Class vessels already ordered are expected to be delivered in the second half of 2026. The four additional vessels under the declared options will be delivered between May and November 2027.


Photo credit: Wallenius Wilhelmsen
Published: 1 March 2024

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