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Singapore hosts Asia’s first ISO meeting for LNG as a marine fuel

17 Apr 2018

Singapore hosted the first meeting in Asia of a Working Group of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) to develop a new standard for liquefied natural gas (LNG) as a marine fuel on 13-14 of March.

“It’s the fifth meeting of the TC28/SC4/WG17 working group and I wanted to have it in Asia because there are so many stakeholders and players from the marine industry in the region,” Dr Marc Perrin, Convenor of the ISO working group told Manifold Times.

“It’s very important to have participation from Asia and we are so glad to have input from Singapore and South Korea; unfortunately, no representatives could come from China and Japan because of too short time since their registration but it’s a good step and likely we will have another meeting next year in Asia.”

Dr Perrin, who is also the Independent Consultant for ENGIE Lab CRIGEN, noted developments in the policy and planning sectors from the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and European Union (EU) to favour shipowners adopting LNG as a marine fuel in the long run, due planned NOx emissions limitation and expected carbon taxes.

The IMO mandatory fuel consumption data collection system for international shipping affecting vessels above 5,000 GT is due to start from 2019.

The EU MRV (Monitoring, Reporting, Verification) which requires ship owners and operators to annually monitor, report and verify CO2 emissions for vessels larger than 5,000 GT calling at any EU and EFTA (Norway and Iceland) port has already started since 1 January 2018. 

“The recording of carbon emissions data is the first step to go for CO2 emissions regulation for the shipping industry. Taxes on carbon emissions will come; though there is not yet any deadline but it is under discussions and I am sure it will come,” confirms Dr Perrin.

“So I think if the maritime industry wants a long term solution it should also consider CO2 emissions.

“It will be an additional advantage for LNG as already presently when you go for LNG as a marine fuel, you are sure to meet the 2020 sulphur cap and the coming nitrogen oxide (NOx) cap.

“And indeed the last step will be CO2; you will be making a good choice in the long term when choosing LNG for these three reasons.

“Right now they have started this and in the future when the shipping industry needs to report the carbon emissions and when you need to pay a carbon tax this is where LNG will really shine.”

In 2016, the International Monetary Fund called for a carbon tax on aviation and shipping to help deliver global climate goals by proposing a charge of $30 a tonne on carbon dioxide embedded in international transport fuels.

LNG emits 0.05 metric tonnes (mt) CO2 per million British thermal units (Btu) of energy, compared to 0.07 mt for diesel fuel and heating oil, according to the US Energy Information Administration.

“In addition, it takes more energy to produce low sulphur heavy fuel oil [that is able to comply with the 0.5% sulphur cap for marine fuel coming 2020] than conventional fuel oil,” adds Dr Perrin.

“Additional carbon dioxide is produced when exhaust gas de-sulphurisation and de-nitrification are required for fuel oil technologies; this treatment is not necessary for exhaust gases from LNG.

“So LNG is really the fuel of choice for the future!”

Published: 17 April, 2018

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