IMO2020: Another Owner Says Scrubber Bans Have No Economic Impact

Tuesday February 12, 2019

Fears that recent high-profile open-loop scrubber bans in territorial waters will impact the economics of the technology seem increasingly off the mark, with Star Bulk today the latest to join a growing number of scrubber-advocating shipowners to say the bans will be no impact.

“When we did our calculation on scrubbers we did not take into account port time at all. We only took into account sea days, so it does not make a difference,” CEO Petros Pappas said during today’s 2018 Q4 earnings call.

“Actually, it's going to potentially be even better because there's going to be many ports that have no ban on open-loop scrubbers, and there we will be able to use them. Also, please keep in mind that in port the consumption is like 2.5 tonnes per vessel, where at sea it can be anywhere between 25 and 50 tonnes. And therefore, this consumption is very, very minor.”

The comments echo those made last week by tanker owners DHT Holdings and Dorian LPG Ltd.

In terms of payback, Pappas said that with a differential between compliant fuel and HSFO of between $250 and $300, "we may be able to repay the scrubbers within a year or so."

The dry bulk player said last year it will install scrubbers across its entire fleet.