It is no surprise that the first container ship to be bunkered with LNG in the Port of Singapore would be controlled by the CMA CGM Group
The French container ship giant has a strong commitment to LNG as a fuel as the best available solution to meet near-term CO2 and greenhouse gas emissions goals. By the end of 2022, it will have taken delivery of 32 LNG-fuelled container ships in its fleet.
The first of these LNG-fuelled box ships to bunker in Singapore was CMA CGM Scandola, one of CMA CGM Group’s pool of liners in its MEX 1 service between Asia and the Mediterranean. The milestone refuelling in March was also the first ship-to-ship operation by FueLNG Bellina, Singapore’s new ‘smart’ LNG bunkering vessel. Adding to the gravity of the occasion, the refuelling marked the first simultaneous cargo and LNG bunkering operations for a ship in Asia.
CMA CGM was joined in the bunkering operation by LNG supplier FueLNG, a joint venture between Keppel Offshore & Marine Ltd and Shell Eastern Petroleum (Pte) Ltd, and the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore. CMA CGM Scandola was fuelled with 7,100m3 of LNG from FueLNG Bellina.
Commenting on the bunkering, Singapore Senior Minister of State for Transport and Foreign Affairs Chee Hong Tat said, “The use of more sustainable fuels is an important element of the decarbonisation strategy. As the shipping industry explores alternative zero-carbon fuels, LNG is a viable transitional fuel.” As the largest global bunkering hub, Singapore is looking to provide more sustainable refuelling solutions for the shipping industry, said Minister Chee.
CMA CGM said the use of LNG enables a reduction of 99% in SOx, 91% in particulate matter emissions and 92% in NOx emissions, far surpassing the requirements of current regulations. LNG also provides an initial solution to the challenge of tackling climate change. An LNG-powered vessel emits up to 20% less CO2 than conventional marine fuel-powered systems.
CMA CGM Scandola is the first of six new 15,000-TEU LNG-powered, ultra-large container ships that CMA CGM Group will bunker in Singapore this year. These ships will be deployed on CMA CGM’s MEX 1 service between Asia and the Mediterranean.
The simultaneous container loading and discharging operations (SIMOPS) alongside LNG bunkering operations, shortens time in port, increasing vessel efficiency. From Singapore, CMA CGM Scandola set sail with over 14,800 TEU containers, comprising household goods, electronic items, machinery and personal protection equipment for the Mediterranean. The box ship was set to arrive at the now reopened Suez Canal on 3 April, according to AIS tracked by VesselFinder.
CMA CGM Scandola is part of a growing fleet of container ships built with LNG dual-fuel engines. Of the 197 LNG-fuelled vessels in operation and 257 under construction, 15 are box ships in the active fleet, and another 43 are on order, according to DNV’s Alternative Fuel Insight platform. Part of the recent newbuild boom in box ships has been highlighted by LNG-fuelled vessels ordered by Hapag-Lloyd, Eastern Pacific Shipping and Seaspan.
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