Two LNG-powered VLCCs among todays order. Image Credit: MOL
Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd. (MOL) today announced it has ordered six LNG-powered newbuilds, continuing the current trend of owners favouring gas-fuelled tonnage.
MOL has signed deals for four 210,000 DWT-class Capesize bulkers with CSSC Qingdao Beihai Shipbuilding Co., Ltd., and two 309,000 DWT-class VLCCs with Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd.
The vessels are scheduled for delivery in 2025 through 2026.
In total MOL Group has ordered 16 ocean-going LNG-fueled vessels and plans to expand its fleet of LNG-fueled vessels to about 90 by 2030.
The orders come at a time of increasing focus on alternative bunker fuels as the industry faces the need to decarbonize its operations.
LNG is currently by far the most popular alternative to oil bunkers despite it receiving continued criticism that, like oil, it is a fossil fuel and non-carbon energy carriers are needed to transition shipping to a zero GHG emitting industry.
Advocates of LNG say it can achieve real emissions savings today - by MOLs calculations LNG is expected to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) by about 25%-30% - while the expected future use of synthetic gas offers a true pathway to zero emissions.