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SIBCON 2022 Interview: ExxonMobil to invest more than USD $15bn on GHG reduction initiatives by 2027

Haur-Bin Chua, Regional Commercial Fuels Sales Director, Marine, ExxonMobil Asia Pacific, discusses market dynamics, the adoption of MFM technology, and digitalisation of the bunkering value chain with Manifold Times.

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Haur Bin Chua

The following interview with Haur-Bin Chua, Regional Commercial Fuels Sales Director, Marine, ExxonMobil Asia Pacific Pte Ltd, is part of coverage for Singapore International Bunkering Conference and Exhibition (SIBCON) 2022, where Manifold Times is an official media partner.

MT: As an oil major capable of producing its own VLSFO, how has market dynamics changed for the company in Singapore after the introduction of major trading houses as bunker suppliers at the republic over the past few years?

At a macro level, the introduction of more bunker suppliers in Singapore promotes competition and innovation. This further improves Singapore status as a major regional bunkering and trading hub.

Furthermore, the increase in the number of suppliers also provides more choice to customers. Different suppliers have different areas of focus, and it is fundamentally important for fuel purchasers to know their suppliers. ExxonMobil’s focus as a responsible producer and supplier is to ensure that our fuels not only meet the IMO Sulphur mandate and ISO 8217-2017 standards, but also pass rigorous fit-for-use assessments for reliability and performance. We formulate our fuels with proprietary patented technology that helps identify and mitigate potential compatibility issues during the development process.

MT: ExxonMobil chartered the first MFM-equipped bunker tankers “Emissary” and “Jewel” during trials at the Republic and seems to be a supporter of MFM bunkering operations; does the firm have any plans to expand the use of MFM technology for bunkering operations to other parts of the world?

When it comes to marine fuel bunkering, having accurate and transparent data translates to cost benefits for our customers. It also allows vessel operators peace of mind when receiving bunker supply through MFM system.

We are very proud to be one of the pioneers for the MFM system. ExxonMobil was the first company to:

  • Market with a port authority approved MFM system
  • Guarantee delivery by a MFM system in Singapore
  • Deliver more than 1 million tons via MFM system
  • Launch an independently accredited MFM system in Hong Kong

Beyond Singapore where MFM is mandated, ExxonMobil has MFM implemented onboard its bunkering barges in the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp (ARA) ports as well as in France and Hong Kong.

MT: Digitalisation has been gaining pace around the world. The marine industry, including the bunkering sector, has been slow to pick it up. With data from MFM measurements already being digital, how should the bunkering industry should move towards digitalisation and transparency?

With digitalisation, there is value in exchanging data within an ecosystem to capture efficiencies and improve supply chain visibility. In Singapore, SGTradex was created as a result of Singapore Together Alliance for Action (AfA) on supply chain digitalisation. ExxonMobil is one of the participants working with the taskforce to explore ways to integrate disparate data into one supply chain common data infrastructure.

MT: What is ExxonMobil’s direction for alternative bunker fuels? Have any trends been spotted?

For the maritime industry, alternative low carbon options may co-exist in a multi-fuels future to address the specific needs of different shipping subsectors. Each of these options may present their own commercial and operational challenges, but to be successful, they will need to be safe, scalable, reliable, and viable.

In the near term, biofuels are an engine-ready alternative that can be used in existing engines without the need for extensive modifications. These biofuels have the potential to reduce GHG emissions by at least one-third compared with conventional marine fuel oil. ExxonMobil is already supplying marine biofuel in the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp (ARA) region and recently, we have successfully completed a commercial bio-based marine fuel oil bunkering in the port of Singapore.

On the longer term, from Well-to-Wake basis, methanol, ammonia and hydrogen are promising alternatives to reduce the carbon footprint of shipping. However, one of their challenges is their lower energy content and the comparatively lower amount of energy they can store in the tanks of a ship. Ship designs would require changes to accommodate fuel containment and gas-supply systems or frequent bunkering.

To accelerate the deployment of these alternative bunker fuels in this hard to decarbonise marine sector, the right regulatory policies have to be in place. ExxonMobil advocates for a low carbon fuel standard (LCFS) to provide a predictable long-term pathway of reductions in carbon intensity (CI) of the fuel pool to support the IMO’s ambition of reducing GHG emissions from shipping. To enable this, policy should include the following attributes:

  • Set declining annual targets for the Well-to-Wake CI of the consumed marine fuels expressed in gCO2equivalent/MJ
  • Be technology neutral to encourage multiple pathways and innovation
  • Provide flexibility to manage investments in the fleets and the growth of lower GHG emission emerging technologies and energy
  • Support lower-carbon fuels, as the life cycle assessment approach helps to provide an effective tool for comparing alternative fuels
  • Include reporting of the fuel CI on the Bunker Delivery Notes
  • In case of non-compliance, a pre-determined buy-out could provide revenues to a global fund dedicated to the marine sector

As a major marine fuel supplier, ExxonMobil supports the International Maritime Organization (IMO) with a plan to be part of the solution. To provide solutions in the multi-fuels future, we are investigating several potentially viable alternatives to conventional fuel formulations including biofuels, hydrogen, methanol and ammonia. By 2027 we plan to invest more than $15bn on initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Our commitment to driving emission reductions in support of a net-zero future is outlined in our Advancing Climate Solutions – 2022 Progress Report.

 

Photo credit: ExxonMobil
Published: 12 October, 2022

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Ammonia

Singapore: EMA, MPA shortlist two consortia for ammonia power generation and bunkering

Chosen consortia are Keppel’s Infrastructure Division and Sembcorp-SLNG, and the bunkering players in these consortia are Itochu Corporation, NYK Line and Sumitomo Corporation.

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The Energy Market Authority (EMA) and the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) on Thursday (25 July) said they have shortlisted two consortia that will proceed to the next round of evaluations of proposals to provide a low- or zero-carbon ammonia solution on Jurong Island for power generation and bunkering. 

The two consortia were selected from a total of six that were earlier shortlisted in 2023 to participate in a restricted Request for Proposal (RFP), following an Expression of Interest (EOI) called in 2022. The bids were assessed based on the technical, safety and commercial aspects of their proposals. 

The two consortium leads are Keppel’s Infrastructure Division and Sembcorp-SLNG, and the bunkering players in these consortia are Itochu Corporation, Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha (NYK Line) and Sumitomo Corporation. The two consortia will proceed to conduct engineering, safety and emergency response studies for the proposed Project.

At the next phase, we will select one of the two bidders as the lead developer of the project. The lead developer will develop the end-to-end ammonia solution comprising (i) generating 55 to 65 MW of electricity from imported low- or zero-carbon ammonia via direct combustion in a Combined Cycle Gas Turbine; and (ii) facilitating ammonia bunkering at a capacity of at least 0.1 million tons per annum (MTPA), starting with shore-to-ship bunkering followed by ship-to-ship bunkering. 

Given the nascency of the technology and global supply chains, the Government will work closely with the appointed lead developer to implement the Project. We aim to announce the lead developer by Q1 2025.

The project is part of Singapore’s National Hydrogen Strategy launched in 2022, which outlines Singapore’s approach to develop low-carbon hydrogen as a major decarbonisation pathway as part of the nation’s commitment to achieve net zero emissions by 2050.

A key thrust of this strategy is to experiment with the use of advanced hydrogen technologies that are on the cusp of commercial readiness. Ammonia is currently one of the most technologically-ready hydrogen carriers with an established international supply chain for industrial use.

“If successful, the project will position Singapore as one of the first countries in the world to deploy a direct ammonia combustion power plant and support the development of ammonia bunkering for international shipping, EMA and MPA said.

“This will help to unlock the potential of low-carbon ammonia as a low-carbon fuel.”

 

Photo credit: Manifold Times
Published: 25 July 2024

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LNG Bunkering

China: River-sea LNG bunkering vessel named and delivered in Shanghai

The 14,000 cubic metre ship, “Huaihe Nengyuan Qihang”, was independently developed, designed and built by Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding (Group) for Huaihe Energy Holding Group.

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China: River-sea LNG bunkering vessel named and delivered in Shanghai

China’s river-to-sea LNG bunkering vessel, which was built locally, was named and delivered in Shanghai on Monday (19 July), according to the Shanghai Association of Shipbuilding Industry (SASIC). 

The 14,000 cubic metre (cbm) ship, Huaihe Nengyuan Qihang, was independently developed, designed and built by Hudong-Zhonghua Shipbuilding (Group) Co., Ltd for Huaihe Energy Holding Group as part of China’s "Gasification of the Yangtze River” project.

The ship is capable of travelling through the Nanjing Yangtze River Bridge all year round and has been dubbed a “Customised Yangtze River” LNG refuelling and transportation ship.

The ship is equipped with the B-type LNG containment system independently developed by Hudong-Zhonghua and authorised by a national patent.

According to SASIC, this was the first time such a system has been applied to a domestic LNG  refuelling and transportation ship, marking a major breakthrough in the B-type LNG containment system developed by China with independent intellectual property rights.

Related: China’s first river-sea LNG bunkering ship completes inaugural bunkering operation

Disclaimer: The above article published by Manifold Times was sourced from China’s domestic market through a local correspondent. While considerable efforts have been taken to verify its accuracy through a professional translator and processed from sources believed to be reliable, no warranty is made regarding the accuracy, completeness and reliability of any information.

 

Photo credit: Shanghai Shipbuilding Industry Association
Published: 25 July 2024

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Newbuilding

Singapore: EPS takes delivery of LNG dual-fuel bulker “Mount Ossa”

Firm said said the last vessel in its series of six 210,000 dwt DF LNG Newcastlemaxes chartered to Rio Tinto, was successfully delivered by New Times Shipbuilding.

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Singapore: EPS takes delivery of LNG dual-fuel bulker “Mount Ossa”

Singapore-based shipping firm Eastern Pacific Shipping (EPS) on Wednesday (24 July) said the last vessel in its series of six 210,000 dwt dual-fuel LNG Newcastlemaxes chartered to Rio Tinto, was successfully delivered.

The delivery of Mount Ossa marked the 21st vessel being delivered by New Times Shipbuilding to EPS.

“Despite global challenges, Rio Tinto and EPS have shown unparalleled resilience and a strong commitment to decarbonize shipping,” it said in a social media post.

“Over the past three years, these LNG-powered vessels have proven to be a sustainable choice, emitting 30% less than their conventional counterparts. We have successfully completed over 200 LNG bunkering operations, significantly reducing emissions across our fleet.”

“We celebrate our strong partnership with New Times Shipbuilding on this 21st milestone delivery to the EPS fleet, grateful to have 43 world-class vessels built and delivered, including those on order from New Times, which means we are only halfway through our esteemed collaboration.”

 

Photo credit: Eastern Pacific Shipping
Published: 25 July 2024

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