LNG Bunkering Will Be Available in Time for 2015 Emissions Rules

by Ship & Bunker News Team
Thursday October 4, 2012

The Port of Gothenburg has said that liquefied natural gas (LNG) bunkering will be available at the port in time for 2015 when tougher limits on marine fuel sulfur content go into effect in the European Emissions Control Area (ECA).

"We want to put across a clear message to the shipping industry that LNG will be available when stricter environmental stipulations come into force," said Magnus Kårestedt, Port of Gothenburg's chief executive.

Vessels in the port will not need to enter a special terminal for bunkering but will be able to get fuel directly from a bunker tanker while the vessel is loading or unloading, which the port said would open up potential for large-scale LNG bunkering.

"Bunkering can take place exactly as it does at present," it said

Planning for the new LNG terminal at the Swedish port is "in full flow" according to the statement, and the facility is scheduled to be complete by 2015.

The plans represent a collaboration among the port, gas grid operator Swedegas AB, and tank storage service provider Vopak.

The parties are now investigating the level of market interest in LNG, which they say is driven partly by the 2015 sulfur emissions controls rules, as well as a desire by Swedish companies to move to cleaner alternatives to oil and coal fuels.

"The environmental benefits of LNG have generated demand not only in shipping but also in industry," said Swedegas President Lars Gustafsson.

"At present, we are scanning the market to ensure we dimension the terminal properly and offer the right services."

The terminal will operate on the "open access" principal, meaning that any company interested in providing gas to the Swedish market will be able to reserve capacity, something Gustafsson said would allow customers to buy the gas at the lowest possible price.

Studies have shown significant potential demand for LNG bunkers, but infrastructure development and price represent possible obstacles to the market's growth.