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News / LNG Bunkering/ Thinkstep prepares addendum to LNG marine fuel study, upon feedback

Thinkstep prepares addendum to LNG marine fuel study, upon feedback

30 Sep 2019
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Data consultancy firm Thinkstep on Thursday (26 September) prepared an addendum to the ‘Life Cycle GHG emission study on the use of LNG as Marine Fuel’ due to feedback questioning from a scientific peer about its calculation methodology.

The SEALNG and SGMF commissioned report has been widely recognized as the most comprehensive analysis undertaken to date on the lifecycle GHG emissions of LNG as a marine fuel compared with current and post-2020 conventional marine fuels.

The feedback came from Chief Scientist Dr Elizabeth Lindstad of Norway’s SINTEF, who has earlier concluded continued use of HSFO or HFO (heavy fuel oil) with a scrubber as the most environmentally beneficial means of meeting global Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions targets.

The feedback from Lindstad fell into three main categories:

  • how the study allocated refinery GHG emissions to the different oil-based marine fuels,
  • assumptions on engine efficiencies and
  • how the study handled methane slip.  

“Dr. Lindstad raised several issues with the methodology applied by thinkstep in its analysis: ‘Life Cycle GHG Emission Study on the Use of LNG as Marine Fuel’,” said Thinkstep.

“We believe that as long as HFO is considered a product with a positive market value, HFO should be accountable for certain refinery emissions and should not be considered as “free of any refinery GHG emissions.”

“We also believe that the fuel conversion method we selected is suitable to show the GHG emissions of the Tier III operation according to the scope of the study. Therefore, the consideration of specific engine efficiencies, instead of using a default efficiency for both, LNG and MGO, the consideration of pilot fuel (compared with not considering it) and the consideration of the urea solution (compared with not considering it) are best practice.

“The IMO E2/E3 cycle is an accepted, standardised methodology, which is repeatable and reproducible, and hence – especially with the absence of broadly measured data – an appropriate approach to quantify the GHG emissions, including methane, of vessel engines. Running LNG fuelled engines on low load points would be neither environmentally friendly nor economically beneficial.

“Finally, we fully support the idea of using onboard measurement data instead of steady-state, test-bed data for the combustion of the fuels and, hence, encourage the maritime industry to work towards this.”

A full version of the addendum can be downloaded here.
The full study of Life Cycle GHG emission study on the use of LNG as Marine Fuel can be downloaded here.

Related: HFO with ECGS better for global CO2 reduction, says study

Published: 30 September, 2019

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