US chemical carrier operator Fairfield Chemical Carriers Group (FCC) has concluded a multi-vessel newbuilding programme with Fukuoka Shipbuilding of Japan for the construction of two 26,300-dwt stainless steel chemical tankers with options for an additional four vessels
The 26,300-dwt chemical carrier project is the result of two years of close co-operation between Fairfield and Fukuoka Shipbuilding to design and bring to market the company’s next-generation workhorse stainless steel parcel chemical tankers. The first two units will be delivered in H2 2023.
All vessels will have LNG dual-fuel propulsion and 26 Duplex stainless steel cargo tanks. The design incorporates energy-reducing improvements to hull design and equipment, and the tankers will be outfitted with a smart ship platform to further optimise performance and efficiency. Fairfield will call on Anglo Eastern Ship Management’s experience with LNG dual-fuel engines and it is appointed technical manager of the vessels.
The new shipbuilding contract is Fairfield’s way of signalling it is taking decarbonisation of operations and reducing CO2 emissions seriously. Adopting a propulsion system using LNG as a fuel along with smart shipping concepts to enhance fuel consumption, improve vessel routeing and optimise fleet and cargo management are being combined to reduce the environmental footprint of the vessels.
Fairfield president Todd Clough said, “For 25 years FCC has strived to be an industry leader and innovator. We are pleased to announce we have contracted these dual-fuel LNG, high-specification, next-generation chemical tanker vessels with Fukuoka Shipbuilding Co and look forward to putting the units into service in 2023 alongside our existing young and fully stainless steel fleet. The continued strong support of our principal shareholder Fairfield Maxwell Ltd allows us to make this significant investment in new vessel technologies. A commitment to acting quickly and meaningfully to reduce the carbon footprint of our operations in advance of reductions mandated under IMO 2030 is core to our fleet development strategy.”
Fairfield chief operating officer Jacob de Vries added “Our customers are increasingly conscious of the necessity to move quickly to reduce CO2 emissions across supply chains and we have been receiving encouragement to bring these next-generation ships to market as soon as practical. A greater investment in the ships is required as we add new propulsion technology, additional tanks, and other operational and design improvements. LNG pricing and bunkering infrastructure on our trade lanes, increased trading flexibility from the new tank layout, cost-saving benefits from the new design, and strong demand from our customers will allow FCC to trade the vessels competitively despite the additional initial cost.”
The FCC fleet currently consists of 40 fully stainless steel chemical tankers between 19,900 dwt and 26,000 dwt, with an average age of four years. In addition to the dual-fuel LNG propelled vessels now ordered, the group has four 19,900 dwt and two 25,000 dwt stainless steel parcel chemical tanker vessels on order with Fukuoka Shipbuilding for delivery in H2 2021 through the end of 2022.
Riviera Maritime Media’s Maritime Air Pollution Virtual Forum is being held 30 June 2021 – use this link for more details and to register