€53.3 Million Mediterranean LNG Bunkering Project Launched

by Ship & Bunker News Team
Thursday February 18, 2016

Aegean and eastern Mediterranean port officials gathered in Brussels on Wednesday to set out the objectives for the €53.3 million ($59.4 million) Poseidon Med II, the next phase of the European Union (EU) led liquefied natural gas (LNG) bunkering infrastructure development project.

The meeting is reported to have marked the closing of Poseidon Med, which saw the development of a strategy for introducing and promoting LNG as a marine fuel to curb emissions in the eastern Mediterranean, and the launch of Poseidon Med II, which will be aimed toward the development of Greece as a regional LNG bunkering and distribution hub.

Overall, Poseidon Med II is said to be intended to continue the region's work toward reducing marine transport sulfur emissions to 0.5 percent, in line with EU and international standards.

The discussions are said to include officials from the ports of Piraeus, Trieste, La Spezia, Venice, Genoa, Koper, Rijeka, and Limassol.

Studies are reported to show that demand for LNG bunkers in the Adriatic could reach as much as 950,000 tonnes per year by 2030, but the region’s current lack of LNG infrastructure is presenting a major challenge to required growth.

By December 2020, ports participating in Poseidon Med II are said to be aiming to facilitate the adoption of a regulatory framework for LNG bunkering, develop an extension design for Greece’s Revithoussa LNG import terminal near Athens, and develop an LNG propelled feeder vessel.

Also by 2020, the group is said to be intending to finalise technical designs and plan approval for retrofits and newbuild vessels that utilise LNG for propulsion, as well as for additional port bunker supply infrastructure.

Additionally, the group is said to be aiming to identify synergies with other LNG uses, "develop sustainable LNG trading and pricing, and create financial instruments to support port and vessel installations."

In October, Shell Gas and Power (Shell) announced it had been in negotiations with the Gibraltar government about supplying LNG to the territory, as well as making Gibraltar into an LNG bunkering hub in the region.