KCC inks deal for three wind-assisted CABU III ships, ready for conversion to zero-emission fuels

Oslo-listed shipowner Klaveness Combination Carriers (KCC) has entered into a deal with Chinese shipbuilder Jiangsu New Yangzi Shipbuilding Co for the construction of three third generation (CABU III) vessels.

Image credit: KCC

The company said that the CABU III newbuilds will introduce a new standard of efficiency with an estimated 35% reduction in carbon footprint when compared to their first-generation CABU vessels built between 2001 and 2007, which they will replace.

The new vessels will have around 10% higher cargo carrying capacity and the fuel consumption is estimated to be 30% lower than the first generation CABUs through an optimized design and installation of several energy efficiency measures partly tested out on KCC’s current fleet over the recent years. Furthermore, KCC targets to install wind-assisted propulsion on the CABU III newbuilds, improving efficiency even further. The vessels will as well be prepared for a later time- and cost-effective conversion to burning zero-emission fuels. 

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KCC estimates that the CABU III newbuilds will offer 50-60% lower carbon emission per ton transported than standard dry bulk and tanker vessels in the trades where the CABU fleet ships caustic soda into Australia and various dry bulk commodities out of Australia.

“The new CABU III vessels will introduce a new era of carbon efficiency in KCC’s Australia trade. These newbuilds are key for positioning KCC for expected growing caustic soda import volumes to Australia and for meeting its ambitious targets of an approximately 45% reduction in its carbon intensity within 2030 relative to its actual 2018 performance,” KCC’s CEO Engebret Dahm said.  

Under the terms of the letter of intent signed between the shipbuilder and KCC’s subsidiary, the trio is slated for delivery in Q1-Q3 of 2026.

KCC owns and operates eight CABU and eight CLEANBU combination carriers, which are built for the transportation of both wet and dry bulk cargo. They are operated in trades where the vessels efficiently combine dry and wet cargoes with minimum ballast.

Through their high utilization and efficiency, the vessels emit up to 40% less CO2 per transported ton compared to standard tanker and dry bulk vessels in current and targeted combination trading patterns, according to KCC.