Photo: Illustration; Courtesy of K Line

K Line, BP wrap up biofuel trial on car carrier

Japanese shipping major K Line has conducted a trial use of marine biofuel which was supplied by global integrated energy company BP on its car carrier Polaris Highway.

The marine biofuel was delivered to the vessel at the Dutch port of Flushing on 6 November. After leaving Europe Emission Control Area, the vessel conducted the trial use of the marine biofuel, the company revealed.

The project is part of K Line’s efforts to meet the decarbonization targets and respond to the challenge. Marine biofuel has the potential to become an environmentally friendly alternative fuel, and it is expected to reduce CO2 by about 80-90% in the well-to-wake (from fuel generation to consumption) process without changing current engine specifications.

This marine biofuel uses renewable organic resources such as biomass which don’t utilize as foodstuff and feed crops. Therefore, although CO2 is emitted after its combustion, those emissions are compensated with the CO2 absorbed during the growth of the biogenic sources used as raw materials.

Furthermore, for its production, waste and residues that need to be disposed of can be reused. Some examples are used cooking oil collected from restaurants and residential households and animal fats.

In its Environmental Vision 2050, the company has set a target of improving CO2 emission efficiency by 50% over 2008, to meet the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) targets.

As an action plan for GHG reduction, K Line is introducing zero-emission fuels such as ammonia and hydrogen fuels, as well as carbon-neutral fuels such as bio-LNG and synthetic fuels.

In September this year, the Japanese shipping firm ordered eight LNG-powered car carriers. The 7,000 CEU vessels will be built by shipbuilding companies Nihon Shipyard, Shin Kurushima Dockyard and China Merchants Jinling Shipyard. They are planned for delivery between 2023 and 2025.

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What is more, K Line has joined forces with compatriot firms ITOCHU Corporation, NS United Kaiun Kaisha, Nihon Shipyard and Mitsui E&S Machinery to work on an ammonia-fuelled ship project.

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