Maersk Oil Trading, the bunker supply arm of container line AP Moller-Maersk, plans to carry out a trial bunkering of methanol in Singapore next year.
Maersk Oil Trading, Mitsui & Co, Mitsui & Co Energy Trading Singapore and the American Bureau of Shipping are joining forces to launch a feasibility study of methanol bunkering logistics in Singapore, Mitsui said in a statement on its website on Tuesday during the Sibcon week of industry events in the city-state.
The participants plan to study the design of a potential methanol bunkering vessel, safe operating procedures, fuel storage and regulatory considerations. The aim will be to carry out a ship-to-ship methanol bunkering operation in Singapore in the first half of 2023.
"At AP Moller-Maersk, we have made great progress in identifying sources of green methanol and now developing and proving we can safely deliver it to our vessels is a key priority for us," Mikkel Kannegaard, head of Maersk Oil Trading, said in the statement.
"It will contribute strongly to our target of achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2040."
Maersk is one of the world's largest bunker consumers, and has given significant support to the nascent methanol bunker industry in recent years by announcing its first carbon-neutral vessels will run on green methanol.
The firm's first methanol-powered ship, a 2,100 TEU feeder vessel, is due for delivery in the middle of next year. It has a total of 13 container ships representing 194,100 TEU -- or 4.6% of its current total cargo capacity -- on order.
The challenge now is for the company to secure enough methanol to run these ships. The firm has previously said it may need as much as 6 million mt/year of the alternative fuel by 2030.
Maersk currently has partnerships which should deliver 730,000 mt/year of methanol by the end of 2025.
Methanex subsidiary Waterfront Shipping carried out a demonstration of ship-to-ship methanol bunkering at Rotterdam in May 2021.