Two Sovcomflot tankers will be retrofitted to refuel with LNG directly from a gas terminal ahead of long-term charter to Sakhalin Energy, the operator of the Sakhalin-2 project
Sovcomflot (SCF Group) and Sakhalin Energy, the operator of the Sakhalin-2 project, signed long-term time charter contracts for two Green Funnel-series LNG-fuelled tankers, Korolev Prospect and Vernadsky Prospect.
The agreements were signed at the 24th St Petersburg International Economic Forum by Sovcomflot president and chief executive Igor Tonkovidov and Sakhalin Energy chief executive Roman Dashkov.
The vessels will be delivered to Sakhalin Energy in 2024 and employed to shuttle crude oil for the Sakhalin-2 project for 10 years, with an extension option for up to three years.
Prior to delivery, both tankers will be upgraded, with a bow-loading system installed and their LNG bunkering systems modified to allow direct fuelling from the project’s Prigorodnoye production complex LNG terminal.
Following the delivery of these two vessels to the charterer, the shuttle tankers currently employed at the Sakhalin-2 will continue to provide shipping services to other Sovcomflot customers.
Deputy Prime Minister of Russia Alexander Novak said “The Russian Government keeps a strong focus on environmental protection, continuously introduces measures to enable the reduction in atmospheric emissions, and lends its support to similar initiatives in the business community. Agreements signed today between Sakhalin Energy and Sovcomflot, which provide for using LNG-fuelled tankers in the Russia’s Far East, demonstrates a responsible approach towards sustainability. Adopting LNG as a fuel within the transportation industry, including seaborne transportation of Russia’s export cargoes, is meant to play a significant part in increasing the environmental safety of our planet.”
Mr Tonkovidov commented, “We deeply appreciate the lasting partnership between Sovcomflot and Sakhalin Energy, which saw our vessels safely deliver 67.5M tonnes of oil and 55M m3 of LNG to Sakhalin Energy’s customers in the Asia-Pacific. The agreements signed today allow us to take our co-operation to the next level.”
He added, “Sovcomflot continuously works to expand and upgrade its fleet serving the Sakhalin-2 project, making it ever-more efficient and safe. We are particularly pleased that Sakhalin Energy is eager to employ our Green Funnel tankers, which will help to reduce the carbon footprint of cargo shipping in the Far East. The new long-term time charters will also contribute to reaching the goals set by our SCF-2025 strategy.”
Data collected by SCF Group showed that compared with conventional fuels, LNG reduces carbon dioxide emissions by as much as 26% and nitrogen oxides emissions by 94%, while eliminating both sulphur oxides and particulate matter emissions completely.
SCF Group reported that LNG also reduces fuel consumption by as much as 10-12%, which increases the vessels’ energy efficiency.
Mr Dashkov, noted, “The transition to LNG as marine fuel for vessels employed at the Sakhalin-2 project reflects the global trend towards decarbonisation and is an integral part of our Green LNG corporate strategy. This strategy will allow the company to further contribute to reducing its carbon footprint. Importantly, carbon neutrality cannot be achieved without the involvement of leading businesses. Our longstanding co-operation with Sovcomflot will help us to progress further in this regard.”
Did you miss the latest series of the free Tanker Shipping & Trade Webinar Week webinars? Register here to access all the webinars in the Riviera webinar library.