CMA: moving containers on LNG (file image/pixabay)
French container line CMA CGM is to equip nine new mega-box ships with engines able to burn liquefied natural gas (LNG) as bunker fuel.
The ships will be "LNG-powered" and use only a small amount of marine gasoil for the ignition in the combustion chamber, the company said.
"We have made the bold decision to equip our future 22,000 twenty-foot equivalents (TEUs) vessels with a technology firmly focused on the protection of the environment," Rodolphe Saadé, CMA CGM Group CEO, said.
"By choosing LNG, CMA CGM confirms its ambition to be a leading force in the industry in environmental protection by being a pioneer in innovative and eco-responsible technologies," he added.
As previously reported, CMA CGM had long been rumoured to be considering LNG to power the newbuilds, but told Ship & Bunker at the end of September that a decision on engine specification had yet to be made.
CMA CGM is one of the top three container lines globally.
Industry figures and delegates to next week's UN meeting on climate change in Germany are meeting at a 'decarbonisation summit' this week where strategies for reducing shipping's carbon footprint will be examined.