Tommy Thomassen, Chief Technical Officer at Maersk Tankers. Image Credit: Maersk Tankers
Maersk Tankers today said it will install scrubbers on four of its vessels in move that will no doubt be viewed as another major win for advocates of the technology.
The scrubber systems will be installed on one existing LR2 vessel as well as three LR2 newbuildings within the Maersk Product Tanker fleet. Installing scrubbers on smaller-sized tanker vessel is not currently deemed financially viable, it added.
“We have carried out extensive analyses while also consulting with industry specialists and relevant regulatory bodies. Based on that, installing scrubbers on selected larger-sized product tanker vessels is assessed to be a financially viable solution while combining it with the use of compliant low-sulphur fuel on the majority of the fleet,” said Tommy Thomassen, Chief Technical Officer at Maersk Tankers.
Maersk has been notably outspoken against the use of scrubbers, but is now among several firms who have had a change of heart on the technology.
Most notably, the environmental credentials of scrubbers have come under pressure in recent months, particularly in respect to their impact on the marine environment, and Maersk Tankers made a point of saying it made its decision by taking into account the "long-term financial viability of available options and potential environmental impact."
The wider Maersk group says it has now committed to scrubber retrofit orders totalling $263 million, likely to be equivalent of around 15% of its 750-strong fleet.