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SIBCON 2022: Singapore sets out to drive transformation in bunkering

New initiatives on biofuel as marine fuel, digital bunkering and fuel quality assurance announced at the 22nd edition from 4 to 7 October 2022.

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SMS Chee Hong Tat speaking at SIBCON 2022 1

The Singapore International Bunkering Conference and Exhibition (SIBCON) returns for its 22nd edition from 4 to 7 October 2022, as the world's largest forum for the marine fuel industry. Organised by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA), the biennial event gathers prominent industry players and thought leaders across the global bunkering community to discuss pertinent issues such as trade and supply chain developments, the evolving marine fuel industry, digitalisation for bunkering, and the push for decarbonisation. Themed ‘Driving the Transformation of Marine Fuels’, SIBCON 2022 welcomes 1,800 attendees from over 45 countries.

Speaking at the opening address, Senior Minister of State for Finance and Transport, Mr Chee Hong Tat, shared that the Port of Singapore remained the top bunkering port in 2021 during the COVID-19 pandemic. He added that looking ahead, the global environment has become more uncertain and Maritime Singapore needs to continue transforming to remain relevant as a global hub port and international maritime centre. Mr Chee outlined three key areas - taking steps to kick start our decarbonisation journey, enhancing services through digitalisation, and providing quality assurance - to guide Singapore’s efforts to tackle the near-term challenges for the bunkering sector.

Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Transport, Mr Baey Yam Keng, officiated the SIBCON exhibition with industry partners and toured the exhibits. This year, some 30 exhibitors comprising bunker suppliers, bunker traders, oil majors, engine manufacturers, and software companies participated in the exhibition.

Taking Steps to Kick-start Decarbonisation for the Maritime Sector

The National Climate Change Secretariat is leading public consultation for the potential raising of our level of ambition to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. The push for the full electrification of local harbour craft and the use of biofuels will contribute to this national effort. At the port-to-port level, MPA is working with like-minded ports such as the Port of Rotterdam to establish green and digital corridors and develop a global network.

Singapore continues to make progress on the bunkering of biofuel. Approximately 70,000 tonnes of biofuel have been supplied in Singapore to ocean-going vessels across more than 40 biofuel bunkering operations. Currently, there is no international quality standard for biofuel as a marine fuel. As part of efforts to support the multi-fuel transition towards decarbonisation, MPA together with the industry, academia, and relevant government organisations under the national standardisation programme overseen by Enterprise Singapore, have developed a provisional national quality standard for marine biofuel to support the development of biofuel bunkering. MPA has also developed a framework setting out conditions under which licensed bunker suppliers may supply biofuel within the Port of Singapore to support trials conducted by vessels. Please refer to MPA Port Marine Circular No. 21 of 2022 in the Annex for details of the standard and requirements.

On quantity assurance, MPA is working with the Technical Committee for Bunkering, to study the impact of biofuel on the metrological accuracy of Mass Flow Meters and is working with stakeholders to amend the SS 648: 2019 Code of Practice for Bunker Mass Flow Metering to include biofuels within its scope.

MPA is also actively looking into the reduction of energy demand which can be pursued regardless of the choice of new marine fuels. This will help shipping companies reduce costs and lower carbon emissions. On alternative fuels, LNG is a transition fuel and Singapore is ready to supply LNG bunker, with a total of 24 ship-to-ship transfer operations in 2021. Singapore’s second LNG bunker vessel, Brassavola, was christened this week as well.

As part of a multi-fuel future, methanol, ammonia and hydrogen derived from renewables and its carriers as well as biofuels could play significant roles in the decarbonisation of global shipping. MPA will continue to collaborate with public and private sector partners to accelerate the trials and adoption of these new fuels to support our domestic and international sustainability goals.

Strengthening fuel quality assurance

MPA announced in May 2022 that it will co-chair an Industry Expert Group (IEG) with the Singapore Shipping Association (SSA) to strengthen quality assurance of bunkers supplied in Singapore and establish a list of chemicals to be tested and their corresponding concentration limits. The IEG includes relevant professional bodies, including the Chemical Metrology Division from Singapore’s Health Sciences Authority, International Council on Combustion Engines, and International Bunker Industry Association. The IEG is expected to provide their recommendations by Q1 2023. MPA, SSA and the IEG will also share information with the International Maritime Organization and International Organization for Standardization as appropriate.

Accelerating digitalisation of bunkering supply chain

Along with the opening conference at SIBCON 2022, Mr Chee also witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Singapore Trade Data Exchange Services (SGTraDex) and key industry solution providers. The MoU seeks to promote the integration of the SGTraDex with solution providers to enable efficient data flows and systems interoperability across the bunker supply chain.

SGTraDex MOU Signing Ceremony 1

Another industry agreement that was signed in conjunction with SIBCON 2022 includes the MoU between S&P Global Market Intelligence and Bunkerchain on Marine Vessel Pass, an Identity as a Service (IDaaS) that enables ship owners to create digital identities for ships. This could potentially enable vessels to replace wet ink ship stamps and physical signatures.

Joint Oil Spill Exercise to test operational readiness to oil spills at sea

MPA is leading a multi-agency Joint Oil Spill Exercise (JOSE) 2022 on 7 October to test and demonstrate Singapore’s operational readiness to respond to a simulated oil spill incident resulting from a “collision” between a tanker and a bulk carrier near the Raffles Reserved Anchorage. More than 100 personnel from the MPA, Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore, Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) and Singapore Police Force (SPF), together with Shell Companies in Singapore and Oil Spill Response Limited (OSRL) will be participating in the exercise. JOSE 2022 will showcase MPA’s newest patrol craft, MPA Guardian, as the On-Scene Commander platform to direct and coordinate the Whole-of-Government (WoG) responses, as well as to deploy its oil dispersant spray system and oil spill containment booms to control the oil spillage.

During the exercise, apart from showcasing firefighting capabilities at sea, the SCDF will also be involved in the rescue and evacuation operations, including a height rescue scenario where injured crew will be rescued from the upper-deck of a vessel using a lowering system and transferred to SCDF marine vessels for evacuation. SPF’s Police Coast Guard will provide a security cordon of the incident site. This will prevent unauthorised entry by other vessels, facilitate clean-up works, as well as ensure the safety of vessels in the vicinity.

In addition to the deployment of oil spill containment booms and skimmers around the bunker tanker, OSRL will dispatch a Hercules-C130 aircraft to perform a low level and wide-area dispersal of “oil dispersant” over the anchorage to contain the spread of the spillage.

JOSE 2022 is expected to host over 80 delegates from SIBCON 2022.

SPS Baey Yam Keng officiating the launch of SIBCON 2022 Exhibition 1

 

Photo credit: Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore
Published: 5 October, 2022

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LNG Bunkering

Singapore: Pavilion Energy supplies LNG to TFG Marine dual-fuel bunker tanker

“MT Diligence” was refuelled with 34 cubic metres of LNG bunker fuel, supplied by Pavilion Energy, marking the first LNG bunkering of TFG Marine’s bunker vessel.

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Singapore: Pavilion Energy supplies LNG to TFG Marine bunker tanker

Global marine fuel supply and procurement firm TFG Marine on Monday (20 May) announced the completion of the first liquefied natural gas (LNG) refuelling of its dual-fuel bunker tanker MT Diligence this week in Jurong Port, Singapore.

The 34 cubic metres (m3) of LNG to power the MT Diligence was supplied by the Marine division of Singapore-headquartered Pavilion Energy. 

“Deploying a vessel that can be powered by LNG as well as conventional low sulphur marine fuels helps TFG Marine to meet its licence requirement with the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA),” TFG Marine said in a social media post.

Singapore: Pavilion Energy supplies LNG to TFG Marine dual-fuel bunker tanker

“Built and operated for TFG Marine by CBS Ventures Pte Ltd, the 5,000 dwt MT Diligence has been designed to our technical specifications, including stringent safety considerations and has joined our supply fleet this year in the major bunkering centre of Singapore.”

Manifold Times previously reported TFG Marine christening the first LNG dual-fuel bunker tanker to join its fleet.  

The newbuild vessel, MT Diligence, has joined the company's low sulphur fuel oil and biofuel supply operations in the major bunkering centre of Singapore.

Related: LNG dual-fuel bunker tanker “MT Diligence” joins TFG Marine fleet for Singapore ops

 

Photo credit: TFG Marine
Published: 21 May 2024

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Methanol

Argus Media: Low-carbon methanol costly EU bunker fuel option

Despite GHG emissions savings that low-carbon methanol provides, it cannot currently compete on price with grey methanol or conventional marine fuels.

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Ship owners are ordering new vessels equipped with methanol-burning capabilities, largely in response to tightening carbon emissions regulations in Europe. But despite the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions savings that low-carbon methanol provides, it cannot currently compete on price with grey methanol or conventional marine fuels.

17 May 2024

Ship owners operate 33 methanol-fueled vessels today and have another 29 on order through the end of the year, according to vessel classification society DNV. All 62 vessels are oil and chemical tankers.

DNV expects a total of 281 methanol-fueled vessels by 2028, of which 165 will be container ships, 19 bulk carrier and 14 car carrier vessels. Argus Consulting expects an even bigger build-out, with more than 300 methanol-fueled vessels by 2028.

A methanol configured dual-fuel vessel has the option to burn conventional marine fuel or any type of methanol: grey or low-carbon.

Grey methanol is made from natural gas or coal. Low-carbon methanol includes biomethanol, made of sustainable biomass, and e-methanol, produced by combining green hydrogen and captured carbon dioxide.

The fuel-switching capabilities of the dual-fuel vessels provide ship owners with a natural price hedge. When methanol prices are lower than conventional bunkers the ship owner can burn methanol, and vice versa.

Methanol, with its zero-sulphur emissions, is advantageous in emission control areas (ECAs), such as the US and Canadian territorial waters. In ECAs, the marine fuel sulphur content is capped at 0.1pc, and ship owners can burn methanol instead of 0.1pc sulphur maximum marine gasoil (MGO). In the US Gulf coast, the grey methanol discount to MGO was $23/t MGO-equivalent average in the first half of May. The grey methanol discount averaged $162/t MGOe for all of 2023.

Starting this year, ship owners travelling within, in and out of European territorial waters are required to pay for 40pc of their CO2 emissions through the EU emissions trading system. Next year, ship owners will be required to pay for 70pc of their CO2 emissions. Separately, ship owners will have to reduce their vessels' lifecycle GHG intensities, starting in 2025 with a 2pc reduction and gradually increasing to 80pc by 2050, from a 2020 baseline.

The penalty for exceeding the GHG emission intensity is set by the EU at €2,400/t ($2,596/t) of very low-sulplhur fuel oil equivalent. Even though these regulations apply to EU territorial waters, they affect ship owners travelling between the US and Europe.

Despite the lack of sulphur emissions, grey methanol generates CO2. With CO2 marine fuel shipping regulations tightening, ship owners have turned their sights to low-carbon methanol.

But US Gulf coast low-carbon methanol was priced at $2,317/t MGOe in the first half of May, nearly triple the outright price of MGO at $785/t. Factoring in the cost of 70pc of CO2 emissions and the GHG intensity penalty, the US Gulf coast MGO would rise to about $857/t. At this MGO level, the US Gulf coast low-carbon methanol would be 2.7 times the price of MGO. By comparison, grey methanol with added CO2 emissions cost would be around $962/t, or 1.1 times the price of MGO.

To mitigate the high low-carbon methanol costs, some ship owners have been eyeing long-term agreements with suppliers to lock in product availabilities and cheaper prices available on the spot market.

Danish container ship owner Maersk has led the way, entering in low-carbon methanol production agreements in the US with Proman, Orsted, Carbon Sink, and SunGas Renewables. These are slated to come on line in 2025-27. Global upcoming low-carbon methanol projects are expected to produce 16mn t by 2027, according to industry trade association the Methanol Institute, up from two years ago when the institute was tracking projects with total capacity of 8mn t by 2027.

By Stefka Wechsler

 

Photo credit and source: Argus Media
Published: 21 May 2024

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Bunker Fuel

Bunker Holding, 123Carbon and BV launch carbon insetting solution

Bunker Holding has concluded its first blockchain-powered carbon insetting operation in a new partnership with 123Carbon and Bureau Veritas.

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Bunker Holding:Bunker tanker vessel supplying marine fuel to a cargo ship at anchorage

Marine fuel supplier Bunker Holding on Thursday (16 May) said it has concluded its first blockchain-powered carbon insetting operation in a new partnership with carbon insetting experts 123Carbon and Bureau Veritas.

This insetting partnership allows for the additional cost delivery of lower carbon, alternative marine fuels – such as sustainable biofuel – to be shared by carriers, freight forwarders, and cargo owners within the same value chain; allocated based on a globally accepted book and claim methodology.

“We’re excited to work with 123Carbon and Bureau Veritas, as we believe in complete transparency of how insets are created and transferred. Insetting is not new, but one concern within the maritime sector is under what circumstances alternative fuels are supplied, and who owns the emissions reductions,” said Tobias Troye, Head of Carbon Solutions at Bunker Holding.

By combining its alternative fuel supply expertise, its global access to low-carbon fuels and extensive carrier network with 123Carbon’s secure platform, Bunker Holding said it can offer carriers, freight forwarders, and cargo owners complete transparency and assurance regarding how their insets reduce maritime emissions.

“We are delighted that Bunker Holding not only uses our advanced platform for the issuance of the certificates, but has also chosen a fully branded solution to deliver the certificates in a secure environment to its customers,” said Jeroen van Heiningen, Managing Director of 123Carbon.

Working with 123Carbon’s blockchain-based insetting platform, and Bureau Veritas as third-party assurance partner to verify the fuel intervention and all related documentation, ensures that all insets are issued according to Smart Freight Centre’s Book & Claim methodology and 123Carbon’s assurance protocol.

To facilitate the intervention, Bunker Holding connected three different parties: the cargo owner, who wishes to reduce their scope 3 emissions and is willing to pay the “green premium”, the ship operator, to decarbonise its vessels through the use of biofuels, and the biofuel supplier, to deliver safe, high-quality low-carbon fuels. Due to the commitment from the cargo owner to purchase scope 3 insets, Bunker Holding was able to offer the biofuel at a more competitive cost to the ship operator, enabling the carrier to use biofuels instead of conventional fossil fuels.

“As a group, we are operationalising our decarbonisation strategy, and one key component has been to develop our alternative marine fuel supply capabilities, among others by securing fully certified biofuel availability in more than 100 ports around the world. The relative higher cost of alternative fuels may still prevent carriers to bunker it. However, carbon insetting helps bridge that gap, as it enables cost sharing and also sends an important demand signal to alternative fuel producers to scale up production,” said Valerie Ahrens, Senior Director of New Fuels and Carbon Markets at Bunker Holding.

 

Photo credit: Bunker Holding
Published: 21 May 2024

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