LNG vessel moored at Rotterdam (file image/pixabay)
Rotterdam expects liquified natural gas (LNG) bunkering to be an unremarkable event in the port by 2020.
The Dutch trading and bunkering hub, which has invested solidly in the alternative bunker fuel, is confident that LNG bunkering will form part of the port's regular services when the global sulfur cap on bunker fuel falls to 0.5% in two years' time.
"We expect that by 2020, LNG bunkering will be a routine operation in the port of Rotterdam," said national harbour master René de Vries in a statement posted on the port authority's website.
In addition to LNG bunkering, the authority noted developments in automomous shipping and digital technology-led operational efficiencies. And it said that 600 more ships called at the port last year compared to 2016.
Rotterdam bunker sales for the first nine months of 2017 stand at 7.5 million metric tonnes; by far the majority of these sales (84%) were for fuel oil with distillate grades accounting for 15%.