IMO2020 fuels may need best before dates. Image Credit: Ship & Bunker
The new breed of "hybrid" IMO2020 bunkers expected on the market could come with “best before” dates.
Bunker buyers have already been warned about stability and compatibility issues with the new 0.50% sulfur fuels, but the idea that there could also be a time-sensitive component to this will add a dimension of complexity to vessel operator’s fuel management procedures.
"This is something we will investigate further with the CIMAC Working Group 7 Fuels and the ISO Working Group responsible for maintaining ISO 8217," BIMCO’s Lars Robert Pedersen wrote in the the latest BIMCO “Bulletin”.
"Clearly, if this becomes a regular feature of such fuels, we will need some indicator tests to reveal when this shelf life ends."
The global 0.50% sulfur cap comes into force on January 1, 2020, but many see vessel operators having to make the switch to new fuels in H2 2019.