Japan's "K" Line Says LNG Not Enough to Meet IMO 2030 Carbon Target

by Ship & Bunker News Team
Monday January 6, 2020

The shipping industry shifting to LNG bunkering would not by itself be enough to meet the International Maritime Organization's carbon reduction targets for 2030, according to Japan's Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, Ltd. ("K" Line). 

"We cannot reach IMO's 2030 targets by simply switching diesel oil to LNG fuel," CEO Yukikazu Myochin said in a New Year message to employees on the company's website Monday.

The company ordered its first LNG-fuelled car carrier at the end of 2018, and is due to take delivery of the vessel in the autumn of this year. 

"K" Line is also set to manage an LNG bunker barge owned by a joint venture between Keppel Offshore & Marine and Shell Eastern Petroleum (Pte) Ltd, and the vessel is expected to start operations in the Singapore market in the second half of this year.

In 2018 the IMO adopted an initial strategy on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that envisages a cut of at least 40% from 2008's levels to carbon emissions per transport work by 2030, as well as a cut of at least 50% to GHG emissions for the entire shipping industry by 2050.

Supporters of LNG bunkering claim its use can deliver GHG emission savings of 20% or more, while opponents note this figure may be reduced significantly by the methane released into the atmosphere during bunker operations. 

"K" Line plans to increase research efforts into alternative bunker fuels including ammonia and hydrogen in order to reach the IMO's 2050 target, according to its CEO's message.