LNG Bunker Lobby Questions Criticisms of Key GHG Study

Monday August 26, 2019

A claim by SINTEF Ocean that a key study on LNG bunker GHG emissions used faulty assumptions has itself used flawed logic, says SEA\LNG.

The so-called "well-to-wake" study conducted by Thinkstep was released earlier this year by LNG bunker advocates SEA\LNG and The Society for Gas as a Marine Fuel (SGMF).

Its headline conclusion is that LNG can produce lifecycle GHG savings of between 7% and 21% compared to current oil-based bunkers.

Following its release, SINTEF Ocean Chief Scientist, Dr. Elizabeth Lindstad, said that by her calculations, only 2–stroke high pressure dual fuel engines would result in GHG savings compared to using MGO or HFO.

While a full response to the claims is still being prepared, it has been confirmed to Ship & Bunker that the basis of Lindstad's calculations will themselves be challenged.

SEA\LNG says that chief among the issues is that Lindstad's work does not factor in that the 2–stroke engines most suitable for LNG are used by the majority of deep-sea trade.

Further, in a report published by Fathom, SEA\LNG chief operating officer Stephen Cadden challenged Lindstad's claims the study presumed unrealistically high engine loads that resulted in favourably low methane slip levels for LNG engines.

He argued that not only is slow steaming a temporary phenomenon for certain sectors, there is also a trend to fit vessels with smaller engines operating at higher loads.