Delays in issuing specifications for LNG are holding up its availability as a bunker fuel, according to International Bunker Industry Association’s regional manager for Asia, Simon Neo.
The absence to date of detailed specifications for the bunkering industry for LNG as well as for LPG and methanol means they are not being widely adopted as bunker fuels, he told an industry event in Singapore in early December, according to a report by Platts.
The availability of infrastructure for LNG also poses a concern, he added, particularly in the smaller ports.
This means shipowners are more likely use marine gasoil or low sulphur fuels by 2020, albeit with 95% compliance with the new IMO emissions regulations. “Before 2020, things need to be ready as the date is cast in stone,” he said. “IMO 2020 is final and there will be no delay.”
There are big issues over the quality of fuel, he added, pointing out that the number of vessels affected by fuel contamination out of Houston in early 2018 had now risen to more than 300. In Singapore alone, about 50 vessels were affected.