CMA CGM, Daewoo To Develop LNG-Powered Container Ship

by Ship & Bunker News Team
Thursday September 6, 2012

French container line CMA CGM S.A. (CMA CGM) is working with Korea's Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co. (DSME) to develop a liquefied natural gas (LNG) powered container ship, according to a report by the Wall Street Journal.

"The first vessel could be built within five years when a solution has been completed to supply the vessels with LNG, either using a small vessel alongside, in a container terminal, or even in an LNG tanker terminal," said Ludovic Gerard, vice president of CMA Ships.

"LNG is already being used as a fuel in certain segments, and it has potential to become an energy source used on a larger scale in shipping," said Bo Cerup-Simonsen, the head of Maersk Maritime Technology was quoted as saying.

The introduction of both global and local regulations limiting ship emissions, particularly sulfur, means ship operators are having to address emissions through Exhaust Gas Cleaning System technologies, or by using a different source of fuel.

Lars Petter Blikom, natural-gas-segment director at Det Norske Veritas (DNV) said that demand for low-sulfur fuel will "explode" from 2015 and 2020, when progressively lower global and local sulfur limits come into force.

"It doesn't look like the refineries are shaping up to meet the demand, at least not from the start," Blikom said.

The use of LNG is seen as a viable alternative to low sulfur fuel oil bunkers as it meets the currently planned legislation for reduced sulfur marine fuels through 2020, with Neil Gilliver, President of Rolls-Royce's Merchant sector saying that LNG as a vessel fuel is "indisputably the best long-term solution for ship owners."

Last week Lloyd's Register said that a global acceptance of LNG as a marine fuel will depend on pricing.