‘Years of Innovation and Concept Development Now Are Leading to Real Change’
Expect an onslaught of liquefied natural gas-fueled ships of all kinds in the coming years, says Oslo-based maritime specialist DNV (Det Norske Veritas).
“We believe 500 LNG-fueled ships will be on order by 2015,” DNV Asia Pacific & Middle East COO Remi Eriksen said at the Marintec China conference in Shanghai.
And, “several thousands by 2020,” according to a DNV release summarizing Eriksen’s remarks in China.
‘National Governments, Major Shipyards and Ship Owners’
“Increasing focus on LNG as a clean and cost effective ship fuel has brought forward initiatives throughout the shipping industry, preparing the ground for a more rapid introduction of LNG as fuel for ships in all segments,” the report quotes Eriksen as saying. “
“From a slow start, the interest in LNG as fuel is now very much on the increase. We see studies and projects initiated among national governments, major ship yards and ship owners. Key players throughout the shipping industry are assessing the benefits and risks of going for LNG-fueled vessels, either as conversions or new buildings.
“This greater interest is creating a momentum that in itself increases the speed in which LNG will be introduced to all segments of shipping.”
“Shipping has been lagging behind other industries when it comes to emissions,” Eriksen noted. “For land-based activities, stricter and stricter requirements have been enforced over the past decade or so. As an example, fuel for cars, diesel and gasoline, today contain almost no sulfur, resulting in negligible emissions of SOx. The shipping industry, on the other hand, has been omitted from most of these emissions requirements…
“This era has now come to an end.”
‘This Industry Is About to Bring Forward New Solutions’
“The consequences of the new requirements are very clear: significant changes need to be done either to the ship or to the fuel. Judging by today’s technologies, there are only very few options available.”
One of them is LNG. DNV has invested in the development of concept vessels fueled by LNG to help “collectively will bring the industry forward,” Eriksen said.
“We have put our best and most innovative engineers together to develop ideas that can make shipping cleaner, safer and more cost effective,” Eriksen said. “These ideas have been presented to ship owners, yards, regulators infrastructure owners, oil and gas companies and other stakeholders in the shipping industry in order to stimulate creativity and true progress… This industry is about to bring forward new solutions to solve well known problems, and as a response to new and tougher global regulations.”
Eriksen said that LNG infrastructure is available or in the process of being made available in all major markets, to enable the use of LNG as energy source for power production and other industrial use. As terminals are being planned and built, they gradually take facilities for LNG bunkering – ship fueling – into account.
“The dilemma of the chicken and the egg is now being reduced,” Eriksen said. “We believe a substantial number of vessels will be ordered with dual fuel or with LNG as main fuel. What we see is that years of innovation and concept development now are leading to real change.”