Mark Bell, General Manager, SGMF. Image Credit: SGMF
The liquefied natural gas (LNG) bunker space will see a "surge in activity" moving into 2018, which will be a "tipping year" for gas-fuelled shipping, according to Society for Gas as a Marine Fuel (SGMF) General Manager Mark Bell.
"I have been asked many times recently; 'when will be the tipping point for gas-fuelled shipping?' and I believe that in the future when we look back there won't have been any specific moment we can point to. What I do think there will have been is an entire year – and that "tipping year" is surely going to be 2018," Bell wrote in a recent post on the SGMF website.
Mark Bell, General Manager, SGMF
this is undoubtedly something we can all further look forward to as the greater maritime industry begins to embrace our message
"We have witnessed such significant increase in the number of projects and infrastructure recently and this is undoubtedly something we can all further look forward to as the greater maritime industry begins to embrace our message and realise the tremendous benefits of gas-fuelled shipping."
Bell also notes there have been a number of positive announcements for the sector this year, and says that this, along with a jump in SGMF's membership, "highlights the clear and robust argument in favour of Natural Gas as we all move towards a more sustainable future."
While it was not mentioned by Bell directly, perhaps the most notable development this year for LNG bunkers was CMA CGM's decision to equip its nine newbuild 22-000 TEU capacity box ships with engines able to burn LNG.
As Ship & Bunker previously reported, Total Marine Fuels Global Solutions (TMFGS) clinched a ten-year agreement to supply the LNG bunkers to CMA CGM's vessels, and noted the 300,000 tonne per year deal is equivalent to about 75% of today's LNG bunker demand.
Ship & Bunker recently spoke to TMFGS' Managing Director, Olivier Jouny, who revealed further details about the agreement and its LNG bunkering plans.