A significant portion of the biofuels demand growth at Rotterdam may be coming from MSC. Image Credit: MSC
Blended bunkers including at least some biofuels now take up 11% of fuel oil sales at the Port of Rotterdam, the world's second-largest bunkering hub.
The surprising figures came out in the Dutch port authority's bunker demand figures for the first quarter.
The data showed bio-blends took up 11% of the 1.9 million cubic metres of fuel oil sold there in the first quarter, up from 3% of the 1.78 million cu m sold in the fourth quarter of 2019 -- meaning outright bio-blend sales almost quadrupled on the quarter to about 210,000 cu m.
The total also means bio made up almost 9% of total Q1 bunker sales of 2.35 million cu m.
For comparison, LNG bunker sales at Rotterdam totalled just 15,710 metric tonnes in the first quarter.
Market sources have suggested to Ship & Bunker that biofuels demand at Rotterdam may reach into millions of tonnes per year within a few years.
Biofuel sales are growing as shipping companies start to investigate them as a means of cutting carbon dioxide emissions.
Demand from the Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC) may represent a significant amount of the growth in biofuel demand at Rotterdam.
In December the company said it would now regularly take a 30% biofuel blend when bunkering at Rotterdam, after successful trials with a 10% blend earlier in 2019.