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Alternative Fuels

MPA blueprint prepares marine fuels sector for multi-fuel bunkering transition

Manifold Times provides a summary of the ‘Future Marine Fuels, Bunkering Standards and Infrastructure’ section of the 64-page document.




Future marine fuels adoption framework

The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) on Wednesday (9 March) introduced the Maritime Singapore Decarbonisation Blueprint: Working Towards 2050 document.

Bunkering publication Manifold Times provides a curated summary of the ‘Future Marine Fuels, Bunkering Standards and Infrastructure’ section, which specifies MPA’s plans for getting Singapore’s marine refuelling sector ready for a multi-fuel bunkering transition.

Future Maritime Energy Mix

Based on current industry pilots and feasibility studies, MPA believes biofuels and liquified natural gas (LNG) will be the likely interim or transitional fuels used in the near term.

Biofuels, which scored well from the perspective of readiness of supply, infrastructure and maturity of technology, and electrification have been identified as the most viable energy options for harbour craft operating within Singapore.

While not favouring any particular fuel type, MPA expects hydrogen and its carriers (including ammonia, e-methanol) as well as bio-LNG to potentially play important roles in the decarbonisation of international shipping in the mid to long term.

Overview of present assessment of low zero carbon fuels

Moving forward, MPA will focus on seven anchors to facilitate the transition towards low and zero-carbon bunker fuels, namely: (i) technology trials and R&D, (ii) supply, (iii) regulations and standards development, (iv) demand, (v) financing, (vi) talent and skill development, and (vii) international collaboration and partnerships.

Technology Trials and R&D

MPA is actively collaborating with industry partners to conduct feasibility studies and pilot trials. Ongoing collaborations include:

ongoing collaborations across various fuel types

Supply – Bunkering, Storage and Distribution

MPA envisages some existing infrastructure to be retrofitted, whilst investments into new infrastructure will allow the scaling up of fuel supply in line with shipping’s future demand for various low and zero-carbon fuels.

To support first movers, MPA is prepared to explore co-funding supply assets for low and zero-carbon fuel solutions by developing an ammonia bunkering ecosystem in Singapore through a pilot programme.

It will comprise of pilot trials, testing bunkering procedures, development of bunkering infrastructure, and honing of operational experiences and capabilities in ammonia bunkering.

Regulations and Standards Development

MPA is working to develop bunkering guidelines for future fuels in ports, such as through the Future Fuels Port Network, to enable the safe transport and bunkering of low and zero-emission fuels.

For ammonia, the Global Centre for Maritime Decarbonisation (GCMD), setup by MPA and six founding partners in July 2021 has selected classification society DNV to lead a study to define a robust set of safety guidelines and operational envelopes that will establish the basis of a regulatory sandbox for ammonia bunkering trials at two local Singapore sites.

GCMD will also set up an Industry Consultation and Alignment Panel to solicit inputs in response to the findings and recommendations from the study.

In the longer term, MPA also plans to work with stakeholders to develop a set of Technical Reference guidelines on the safe bunkering of ammonia and will partner international partners to achieve harmonised global standards.

Demand – Market Structure and Policy

Given the potential future adoption of hydrogen and its carriers in the maritime industry, MPA is working with various government agencies to assess the land-take, infrastructure and resource needs to build the ecosystem needed to trial the import, storage, distribution, and transportation of hydrogen.

MPA will also partner the agencies to study the demand projections, regulatory incentives, and safety standards for future fuels across different sectors in Singapore.


MPA is working with MAS and industry partners to develop Singapore as a green maritime financing hub and expand the suite of green financing options.

This will increase accessibility to sustainability-linked financing for the development of low and zero-carbon fuel solutions.

MPA aims to establish Singapore as a green maritime finance hub

Talent and Skill Development

Singapore’s efforts in maritime decarbonisation are projected to create and upskill a total of 1,200 sustainability-related jobs over the next ten years. This figure is expected to increase over time, as more green innovative technologies mature and the industry transits to meet IMO targets in 2030 and 2050.

MPA will work with industry partners to identify and map out emerging job roles and skills needs, and support enterprises to equip Singapore’s maritime workforce with the necessary skills and knowledge to support the development of a low and zero-carbon bunkering hub in Singapore.

MPA will also be providing co-funding support to employers and employees to ensure Singapore’s maritime workforce has the necessary relevant skills and knowledge in the domain of maritime decarbonisation.

International Partnerships

Together with the Port of Rotterdam and the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, Japan, MPA signed a Memorandum of Cooperation in October 2020 to form the Future Fuels Port Network.

The FFPN has developed a roadmap to explore the harmonisation of standards for the future marine fuels and pool the knowledge and network of various members to spur the development of future fuels, including the coordination of possible joint bunkering pilot runs with identified shipping lines between ports.

In June 2021, Singapore and Australia announced the formation of a “Low-Emissions Maritime and Shipping Initiative”. As part of the initiative, Australia and Singapore have each committed $10 million to support demonstrations and commercial scale projects, through delivery partners for low emission fuels and technologies for international maritime and port operations.

Related: Singapore: MPA maritime decarbonisation blueprint sets target for bunkering sector
Related: MPA and partners establish Global Centre for Maritime Decarbonisation
Related: DNV selected to lead ‘pioneering’ ammonia bunkering safety study in Singapore
Related: SIBCON 2020: Singapore enters memorandum of cooperation on future fuels port network


Photo credit and source: Maritime Singapore Decarbonisation Blueprint: Working Towards 2050
Published: 11 March, 2022

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

Firm signed a contract for its first ever wind-assisted propulsion system, partnering with bound4blue to install three 22-metre eSAILs® onboard “Pacific Sentinel”.





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

Singapore-based Eastern Pacific Shipping (EPS) on Thursday (22 February) said it signed 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.

Suitable for both newbuilds and retrofit projects, the system delivers energy efficiency and cost savings for a broad range of vessels, regardless of their size and age.

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

José Miguel Bermudez, CEO and co-founder at bound4blue, said: “Signing an agreement with an industry player of the scale and reputation of EPS not only highlights the growing recognition of wind-assisted propulsion as a vital solution for maximising both environmental and commercial benefits, but also underscores the confidence industry leaders have in our proven technology.”

“It’s exciting to secure our first contract in Singapore, particularly with EPS, a company known for both its business success and its environmental commitment.”

“We see the company as a role model for shipping in that respect. As such this is a milestone development, one that we hope will pave the way for future installations across EPS’ fleet, further solidifying our presence in the region.”

Cyril Ducau, Chief Executive Officer at EPS, said: “EPS is committed to exploring and implementing innovative solutions that improve energy efficiency and reduce emissions across our fleet.” 

“Over the past six years, our investments in projects including dual fuel vessels, carbon capture, biofuels, voyage optimisation technology and more have allowed us to reduce our emissions intensity by 30% and achieve an Annual Efficiency Ratio (AER) of 3.6 CO2g/dwt-mile in 2023, outperforming our emission intensity targets ahead of schedule. The addition of the bound4blue groundbreaking wind assisted propulsion will enhance our efforts on this path to decarbonise.”

“With this project, we are confident that the emission reductions gained through eSAILs® on Pacific Sentinel will help us better evaluate the GHG reduction potential of wind assisted propulsion on our fleet in the long run.”

Pacific Sentinel will achieve a ‘wind assisted’ notation from class society ABS once the eSAILs® are installed. 


Photo credit: Eastern Pacific Shipping
Published: 23 February, 2024

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LNG Bunkering

Galveston LNG Bunker Port joins SEA-LNG coalition

SEA-LNG said move will further enhance its LNG supply infrastructure expertise and global reach, while giving GLBP access to the latest LNG pathway research and networking opportunities.





Galveston LNG Bunker Port joins SEA-LNG coalition

Galveston LNG Bunker Port (GLBP), a joint-venture between Seapath Group, one of the maritime subsidiaries of the Libra Group, and Pilot LNG, LLC (Pilot), a Houston-based clean energy solutions company, has joined SEA-LNG, according to the latter on Wednesday (21 February). 

SEA-LNG said the move will further enhance its LNG supply infrastructure expertise and global reach, while giving GLBP access to the latest LNG pathway research and networking opportunities.

GLBP was announced in September 2023 and will develop, construct and operate the US Gulf Coast’s first dedicated facility supporting the fuelling of LNG-powered vessels, expected to be operational late-2026.

The shore-based LNG liquefaction facility will be located on Shoal Point in Texas City, part of the greater Houston-Galveston port complex, one of the busiest ports in the USA. This is a strategic location for cruise ship LNG bunkering in US waters, as well as for international ship-to-ship bunkering and cool-down services. GLBP will offer cost-effective turn-key LNG supply solutions to meet growing demand for the cleaner fuel in the USA and Gulf of Mexico.

Jonathan Cook, Pilot CEO, said: “With an initial investment of approximately $180 million, our LNG bunkering facility will supply a vital global and U.S. trade corridor with cleaner marine fuel. We recognise that SEA-LNG is a leading partner and a key piece of the LNG bunkering sector, and will give us access to insights and expertise across the entire LNG supply chain.

“LNG supports environmental goals and human health by offering ship operators immediate reductions in CO2 emissions and virtually eliminating harmful local emissions of sulphur oxides (SOx), nitrogen oxides (NOx) and particulate matter.”

President of Seapath, Joshua Lubarsky, said: “We are very pleased to be supporting the decarbonization of the maritime industry through strategic, and much needed, investments into the supply of alternative fuels.  We are also happy to be a part of SEA-LNG which has done a wonderful job in advocating for advancements in technology in this vital sector.”

Chairman of SEA-LNG Peter Keller, said: “We’re proud to welcome another leading LNG supplier to the coalition and are looking forward to a mutually beneficial relationship. With every investment in supply infrastructure in the US and worldwide, the LNG pathway’s head start increases. Global availability, alongside bio-LNG and e-LNG development, makes LNG the practical and realistic route to maritime decarbonisation.

“All alternative fuels exist on a pathway from grey, fossil-based fuels to green, bio or renewable fuels. Green fuels represent a scarce resource and many have scalability issues, so we must start our net-zero journey today with grey fuels. LNG is the only grey fuel that reduces greenhouse gas emissions, well-to-wake, so you need less green fuel than alternatives to improve emissions performance.”


Photo credit: SEA-LNG
Published: 23 February, 2024

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VARO and Orim Energy to supply bio bunker fuels in ARA region

VARO will source, produce and blend various waste and advanced bio feedstocks to high quality bunker fuel specs; Orim will source fuel and gas oils for blending and deliver final biofuel blends to vessels.





VARO and Orim Energy to supply bio bunker fuels in ARA region

VARO Energy (VARO) on Wednesday (21 February) said it is partnering with Orim Energy (Orim) to provide shipping customers in the Port of Rotterdam – and wider Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp (ARA) region - with biofuels. 

The agreement supports the decarbonisation of maritime transportation and inland shipping in Northern Europe. It also contributes to the wider targets set by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to reduce the total annual GHG emissions from shipping by at least 20% by 2030 and at least 70% by 2050, compared with 2008 levels.

Current demand for Fuel Oil in ARA , Europe’s largest bunkering hub, is approximately 14 million tonnes per year. Supported by new EU regulations, the market for B30, a blend of 70% Fuel Oil and 30% biofuels, is expected to grow rapidly to the end of the decade. As a result of this joint initiative, VARO and Orim will be well positioned to meet this increased demand and support the decarbonisation plans of their shipping customers.

VARO’s biofuels trading capabilities and growing biofuel manufacturing asset base will complement Orim’s extensive distribution, storage and bunkering capabilities in ARA. Under the agreement, VARO will source, produce and blend various waste and advanced bio feedstocks to high quality bunker specifications. Orim will source the fuel and gas oils for blending and deliver the final biofuel blends to customers’ vessels.

VARO has a long track record of providing biofuels for maritime logistics. Since 2018, the company has supplied the Port of Rotterdam with HVO100 (100% Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil “HVO”) for use with the Port’s service fleet. In 2023 VARO signed an agreement with Höegh Autoliners to supply the company with 100% advanced biofuels for its shipping fleet.

The partnership is aligned with VARO’s strategy to become the partner of choice for customers in the energy transition by providing them with the low-carbon energy solutions they need to decarbonise.

Dev Sanyal, CEO of VARO, said: “Meeting rising demand for blended biofuels is critical to achieving the EU and IMO’s decarbonisation targets for shipping. Our experience in biofuels, combined with Orim’s logistics and bunkering operations, will help meet this demand at Rotterdam, Europe’s largest port facility. I am delighted to be entering into a strategic partnership with Orim and to further build on VARO’s long-established presence in Rotterdam. This is another step in our journey to enable the decarbonisation of the maritime sector.

Edwin Coppens, Managing Director of Orim, said: “Upcoming EU and IMO regulations drive the need to scale up with biofuels and ensure quality assurance going forward. Partnering with VARO allows us to do just that, using each other’s strengths to optimize our blending expertise and network. We will benefit from VARO’s extensive experience with biofuels, which includes joint testing with leading ship engine suppliers. Together, we can increase our sourcing and supply capabilities, extending our reach and further strengthening our position in the ARA region.”


Photo credit: VARO Energy
Published: 23 February, 2024

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