Coalition urges investment in LNG as fuel
SEALNG, the coalition promoting the use of LNG as marine fuel stressed the importance of continuing investment in the sector in order to meet both air quality and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions targets.
Aiming to aid the industry and governments in making a pragmatic and balanced analysis of the future of maritime fuels, the coalition said that, assessing the case for LNG must include the full benefits from both an air quality and GHG perspective.
“Assessing it purely from a GHG point of view is not responsible – we must consider the significant public health benefits LNG can and is delivering now through significant local emissions reductions in markets where it is being utilized,” the statement reads.
Serious health hazards from the marine industry still persist and must continue to be addressed, the coalition says, adding that LNG is perceived as the solution to these critical air quality issues.
“As regards GHG in the maritime sector, realistic reductions of up to 20 percent are achievable now with LNG. As technology continues to develop, these reductions will increase,” the statement reads.
Furthermore, LNG, in combination with efficiency measures being developed for new ships in response to the IMO’s Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI), will provide a way of meeting the IMO’s decarbonization target of a 40 percent decrease by 2030 for international shipping, SEALNG said.
“LNG is the only scalable and economic alternative fuel available for the vast majority of deep sea ocean shipping. Alternative fuels such as hydrogen and ammonia are not economic, not available at scale, and unproven for shipping operations,” it said.
Electrification, batteries and hybrid solutions, on the other hand, may be viable for certain specific short sea, harbor or ferry type operations but this represents an almost infinitesimal portion of the world’s vessel fuel consumption.
These future fuels will require huge investments by industry and governments over decades to realize their potential, SEALNG said.
BioLNG (from biogas sources such as landfills and waste generators which is renewable and CO2 neutral) can and is already being used as a ‘drop-in’ fuel, significantly reducing GHG emissions. While longer-term, ‘power-to-gas’ is a key technology with the potential to produce large volumes of renewable LNG.
LNG-fuelled vessels and bunkering infrastructure can easily blend in bioLNG or zero-emission fuels. Today’s investments will not become stranded and offer further potential to progress towards a zero-emission solution for shipping, SEALNG notes.
It should also be noted that the infrastructure for LNG supply is already there; the focus is on investments in the ‘last mile’ – getting the LNG from the bulk LNG terminals to the ship.
SEALNG, said that in conjunction with SGMF, it is continuing to develop studies and tools for the industry to better understand the true benefits of LNG from both an air quality and GHG mitigation perspective.
The coalition continues to encourage the debate using current and academically supported data and analysis.