The 2021 GREEN4SEA Virtual Forum successfully concluded on April 21 & 22 focusing on the regulatory agenda and industry’s ambitious targets and emerging challenges as we move forward to a more sustainable future for shipping.
he event was organized by SAFETY4SEA having as lead sponsors the following organizations: MacGregor & SQE MARINE. The event was also sponsored by: ABB, ABS, The American Club, Anemoi Marine Technologies (Anemoi), AQUAMETRO OIL & MARINE, Blue Planet Shipping, Bureau Veritas, Capital-Executive Ship Management Corp., Capital Gas Ship Management Corp., Capital Ship Management Corp., ClassNK, CR Ocean Engineering LLC, DeNora, DNV, Dorian LPG, Eastern Mediterranean Maritime Limited (EASTMED), Ecochlor, ERMA FIRST, Green Jakobsen, JOTUN, LATSCO, Lean Marine, Lloyd’s Register, MarineTraffic, IRI/The Marshall Islands Registry, Palau International Ship Registry, RINA, RISK4SEA,Telops, Tsakos Group of Companies, UK P&I Club, WALLEM, WinGD, World Link Communications and World LPG Association (WLPGA).
Supporters of the event were: AMMONIA ENERGY ASSOCIATION, ECSA, EGCSA, Green Award Foundation, IHMA, INTERCARGO, ISRA, IWSA, METHANOL INSTITUTE, NAMEPA, POSEIDON MED II, Sustainable Shipping Initiative, University of Strathclyde Glasgow, WLPGA and ZESTAs.
Panel 1: Green Shipping Challenges
Sulphur cap marked the beginning of the decade in which industry’s environmental agenda is overwhelmed with more regulations along with the decarbonization challenge. As we are heading towards a greener industry, the challenges around are many; thus, industry stakeholders need to be aware of the available options to comply accordingly.
Green Shipping Challenges at a glance
- IMO Sulphur cap implementation challenges relate to viscosity, paraffinic content.
- Problems reported mainly due to the management and use of the fuel by crews onboard because of different fuel characteristics.
- Overall, according to feedback by shipowners, industry adopted well to IMO Sulphur Cap transition despite all challenges
- NOx Tier III implementation was smooth as well
- There were not any alarming issues with NOx Tier III only minor failures with record keeping were noticed.
- Carbonization is more complex that the previous challenges the industry
- EU policy makers need to realize the special characteristics of the industry in order any future measures to be consistent and scalable with IMO.
Nicholas Makar, Senior Vice President, IRI/The Marshall Islands Registry noted that industry’s successes in meeting environmental challenges can be clearly measured by observing the evolution of MARPOL over the years. Nevertheless, with greater awareness and concern developing relative to the industry’s environmental impact and decarbonization goals, maintaining the IMO’s timetable on reducing greenhouse gas emissions from shipping remains a high priority.
Dr. William H. Moore, Global Loss Prevention Director, American Club, provided a quick overview of latest green shipping challenges, i.e. BWM, ship recycling, sulphur cap implementation, LNG, LPG, Ammonia etc. P&I clubs have always been in support of both safety and green technology development initiatives, he said, noting that acutely aware that new technologies also bring new risks. In that regard, marine insurers view these risks through a risk lens taking into consideration their impact.
Sotiris Raptis, Director Maritime Safety & Environment, ECSA, referred to ECSA’s position on European Green Deal and highlighted that a fund should be set up to minimise the administrative burden and re-invest revenues in energy transition of industry. Also a global approach, such as FuelEU Maritime, must be the cornerstone of the EU’s policies since any regional measures would risk undermining the international negotiations at the IMO level, he concluded.
Mark Smith, Loss Prevention Executive, The North of England P&I Association Ltd, noted that the IMO has approved draft regulations aimed at reducing GHG emissions and improving the energy efficiency. There is plenty to consider for shipowners because the new measures look to regulate the design and operational efficiency of relevant vessels. The EEXI technical framework may mean it’s not commercially viable to trade older tonnage beyond 2023. In addition to this, there are operational concerns and contractual considerations for time and voyage charterers.
Konstantinos G. Karavasilis, Senior Loss Prevention Executive, UK P&I Club, talked about the road map to 2050 and IMO’s targeted GHG reduction. We have already started dealing with several GHG reduction, but we have left last the CO2, which seems to be the most difficult to deal with, he noted and provided an overview of the timeline; challenges that ship Owners, Managers and the Industry in general face as well as discussed how EEDI and EEXI will affect Industry’s business and decisions.
Panel 2: Best Practices
To help protect the environment, many organizations are taking measures to lessen the environmental damage of their operations while enhancing their performance. Nowadays that climate change is one of the biggest future threats, it is imperative for all to behave in an environmentally responsible manner.
Best Practices at a glance
- Data measurement, transparency, continuous feedback and KPIs monitoring are important towards enhanced operational performance.
- Technology will move fast in the next years; shipping is going to be fully digitalized making data collection and performance management essential.
- More owners are investing in different technologies and solutions with the aim to facilitate decision making and have a clear picture of onboard performance
- In the coming years, less operational and human error and more operational excellence is expected.
- Machine learning and AI technology will play key role in providing fuel savings and efficiency
- Collaboration among different solutions providers and charterers, operators and owners, taking into account the different fuel resources will help the industry to move forward.
Martin Hees, International Sales Manager, Aquametro Oil & Marine GmbH, discussed how to tackle the actual and upcoming environmental and efficiency regulations and challenges. All current and upcoming regulations on fuel and energy efficiency require a basic set of basic parameters which need to be measured and monitored, he said and concluded that without proper measurement and control of the basic data there is no way for improvement the vessel and engine performance.
Jean-Philippe Gagnon, Field Applications Scientist, Telops, noted that the IMO now imposes more stringent limits on sulphur oxides emissions. In his presentation, he explained that hyperspectral cameras are capable of quantifying the sulfur content in ship’s fuel oil (% m/m) from remote measurements of the gases in its exhaust plume offering advantages over other sulfur monitoring techniques.
Sarah Zitouni, Regional Sales Manager, Lean Marine, agreed that increased focus and public scrutiny around the climate emergency have escalated the pressure on the shipping industry. With the EEXI introduction by IMO, ship-owners and operators started evaluating their fleet. Their focus now should be on effectively balance compliance with emissions regulations and continuously improved ship efficiency
Tom Evensen, Regional Category Manager, Hull Performance, Jotun, briefly touched on the outcome of MEPC 75, covering EEXI, CII and SEEMP and discussed biofouling implications and challenges and how the industry is currently handling these. Innovative solutions may give the advantage to shipowners and operators to pinpoint the optimum time for a proactive hull inspection and subsequent proactive hull cleaning, he said.
Panel 3: Air Emissions
Poor air quality due to international shipping accounts for approximately 400,000 premature deaths per year worldwide, according to scientific studies. Ships generate SOx, NOx, PM and CO2 emissions as a result of the fuel used to power them and their detrimental impact on air quality continues to increase as the sector grows. IMO legislation bringing forward EEXI and CII is just the latest chapter of the compliance book.
Air Emissions at a glance
- Sulphur cap coincided with the pandemic, so the real impact is not apparent yet, it will need some time; overall transition was smooth.
- Although decarbonization and desulphurization are two different things, they are connected
- Those that have invested in scrubbers appear optimistic as they hope for payback in due course.
- With regards to NOx Tier III compliancy, some yards are reluctant to offer compliant vessels due to space constraints.
- Also, there are problems with biofuels; only methanol is easy to comply with NOx Tier II engines.
- Problems with cylinder liners were noticed with IMO sulphur cap implementation.
- Although our main focus is currently on short term – in 2030 – the bigger picture should be in 2050 and its emissions targets towards decarbonization
- The interpretation of EEXI depends on each stakeholders’ perspective. For EEXI, it remains for MEPC 76 to decide on the final regulation.
- Regulations always hinder increased costs for compliance and need time to see the environmental results; ETS is an example since little do we know for the actual benefits to the environment
- We need to take immediate and drastic actions for ship emissions, the pressure is high and the goals set very ambitious
Harilaos Psaraftis, Professor, Department of Technology, Management and Economics, Technical University of Denmark (DTU), stressed that already more than two years have passed since the landmark decision of the IMO in April 2018, which entailed ambitious targets to reduce green house gas (GHG) emissions from ships. In this talk, he made an attempt to answer this question: is this process on the right track? On the basis of all available information, our answer to this question is, not yet, he said.
Edmund Hughes, Director, Green Marine Associates Ltd., provided an overview of the IMO 2020 approaches to compliance and the available guidance to assist operators with the requirements. With regards to safety implications, the following have been identified: stability of blended fuel oil; compatibility, including new tests and metrics appropriate for future fuels; cold flow properties; acid number; flash point; ignition quality; and cat fines.
Panos Zachariadis, Technical Director, Atlantic Bulk Carriers, stressed the randomness of CII (being either EEOI or AER). Because of such randomness, the resulting energy rating of ships (A, B, C, etc) cannot be representative of a ship’s real energy efficiency and so no CO2 emission reductions should be expected. In his opinion, the CII regulation is just a huge bureaucratic burden to owners, costly to both owners and charterers, with far reaching ramifications which will upset the shipping market.
Dr. John Kokarakis, Vice President Technology & Business Development Hellenic-BS-ME Zone, Bureau Veritas, argued that MEPC 76 is expected to formalize design and operational measures finalized by the recent Corresponding Group. Design measures are mandated through compliance with EEXI, a metric identical to EEDI Phase 2, applicable to existing ships. EEXI is not expected to impose dramatic changes in shipping resulting in less than 1% CO2 reduction.
Panos Kourkountis, Technical Director, Sea Traders SA, highlighted that the environmental impact of a measure should be the ultimate factor for justifying its implementation and its side effects. It is uncertain whether it will be financially viable for ships to keep pace with the future revisions of the EEXIs constantly applying forthcoming technologies. Definitely, EEXI will reduce the ship lifetime, he mentioned.
Panel 4: Ballast Water Management
From 28 October 2020, BWTS are required to meet IMO BWMC type approval requirements, instead of the revised G8 guidelines, as well as USCG type approval regulations. Until today, USCG has granted 40 Type Approvals in total.
BWM Challenges at a glance
- BW Operations were also affected due to COVID-19 causing mainly delays and installations challenges due to restrictions.
- Continuous crew training is vital to familiarize the crew with BWMS.
- In the journey towards BWM Convention implementation, vendors need owners as partners; the biggest challenge is to pass to the crew the right mentality
- A key concern has to do with the shipyards that have many installations; the more press they feel, the more the quality may be reduced and therefore, supervisors play a key role.
- The technical departments should get involved in the BWMS installation and operation.
- Simplicity is not only vital for the installation of BWMS but also for their operation.
- Design issues emerged after BWMS installation; in that regard, proper planning and collaboration are important to identify and minimize any risks.
Dr.Efi Tsolaki, Chief Scientific Officer, ERMA FIRST ESK Engineering Solutions S.A., stressed that the main objective of commissioning testing is not to validate the Type Approval but to demonstrate that the principal treatment methods of the system are capable of functioning as installed. It is based on the Guidance for the commissioning testing of BWMS and it will be required by the Flag State of the vessel or ROs.
Dimitris Tsoulos, Regional Sales Manager EMEA, De Nora Marine Technologies, presented the operational challenges with regards to BWMS performance and suggested ways to overcome these and move forward. In his opinion, contingency planning is essential in order to take into consideration all different fronts, such as technology, system design limitations, training, service and spare parts availability and predictive maintenance.
Panos Smyroglou, Director of Business Development, Ecochlor, discussed about the benefits of a Filterless BWMS as well as the Vessel and Trade Route Options for the Shipowner. Key advantages of a BWMS for operators should be low equipment and installation cost, easy operation for the crew, low maintenance needs and decreased power requirements.
Jad Mouawad, CEO, Mouawad Consulting AS, advised operators to start their BWMS retrofit projects early, in particular 6-9 months in advance. They should boil their options down to BWMS that fit their ship. He also highlighted that ship survey is more important than 3D scanning and recommended to send a marine engineer to do the initial survey. Arrange for local supervision during retrofit is also essential, he concluded.
George Kriezis, Technical Manager, Neptune Lines Shipping and Managing Enterprises S.A., briefly provided an updated with regards to BWM regulatory agenda and argued that crew training is very important for proper operation of BWMS onboard. In that regard, the technical department should be in close cooperation with design office to make corrections and submit to class. Careful selection of the right system should be made with regards to size for the ship type and trade, he noted.
Panel 5: Scrubbers
Approximately 4,000 ships are currently fitted with scrubbers; on the occasion of the one year of IMO sulfur cap implementation, the Clean Shipping Alliance highlighted the important role that scrubbers play in supporting industry’s efforts for carbon neutrality as we are moving towards 2030.
Scrubber challenges at a glance
- With the IMO Sulphur Cap implementation there were not reported any fuel availability problems but only significant issues with the use of ULSF and in particular with VLSFO.
- There were issues with respect of lower than expected viscosity, that caused problems to purifiers; and also waxing problems that caused engines to stop unexpectedly.
- Scrubber numbers are picking up; many operators have shown confidence in this technology reporting payback of their investment
- Almost every newbuild today has a scrubber fitted.
- Companies that have already invested in scrubbers, are now looking to add more scrubbers across their fleet, because have seen the operational and financial and benefits of the technology and payback of their investment
- Operators who have already chosen scrubbers trust the projections with regards to price differential for the coming months.
- No operators that have already invested in scrubber consider this decision as a mistake; hesitation remains with those who haven’t installed it yet.
- The new operators may still consider that scrubbers are complex
- In total, the cost of the investment is lower in newbuliding rather than retrofits
Nick Confuorto, President & Chief Operations Officer, CR Ocean Engineering LLC, presented the many benefits of scrubbing systems such as: reduction of SO2 greater than any of the present-day requirements and also greater than can be achieved by using 0.1%S fuel; reduction of particulate; reduction of black carbon and (d) lower CO2 footprint than fuel switching. He also showed various ways that shipowners have been installing their scrubbers.
Donald Gregory, Director, EGCSA, commented on the ban of open-loop scrubbers that many ports have adopted and said that ban will impact air quality in urban areas increasing NOx, BC & other toxic and carcinogenic emissions from IMO 2020 fuels. Thus, use of IMO 2020 fuels will increase overall maritime transport CO2 emissions. Rotterdam is considered as an example port that has operated with open loop scrubbers on tankers for over 60 years.
Chris McMenemy, CEO, Progreso Group, referred to Scrubber Retrofits & Shipyard Variations, based on his company experience. Through 2018-2020, CleanShip has undertaken over 130 scrubber retrofit projects around the world. Looking back to identify any important retrofit lessons, he highlighted the data surrounding one of the largest hidden retrofit costs with some interesting anecdotes included.
Olli Somerkallio, COO, Foreship Ltd., shared lessons learned from the installation and retrofits of exhaust gas cleaning and recommendations for owners and operators on installation, regulatory compliance and equipment selection. As explained, his company has completed over 60 scrubber projects, including feasibility studies, concept and basic design, detail engineering and project management – covering all vessel types.
Jeanne M. Grasso, Partner, Blank Rome LLP, reviewed and summarized some potential operational challenges and legal issues/risks resulting from the operation of exhaust gas cleaning systems. The discussion included challenges vessels owners/operators face based on differing regulatory requirements in various jurisdictions, managing issues when they arise, and taking preventive and corrective actions to help avoid PSC delays and enforcement actions.
Panel 6: Ship Recycling
From January 2021, ships calling at EU ports, must carry an IHM certificate on board. Overall, the new legal requirements on ship recycling have become a pressing issue for all ships, no matter if they are brand new or very old. What is more, according to a recent development, the ship recycling capacity of India is expected to be doubled by 2024.
Ship Recycling challenges at a glance
- Waste handling is a challenging issue for all industries; maritime stakeholders consider ship recycling as a key issue in their agenda featuring a challenging legal background
- Once implemented, the Hong Kong Convention is expected to create a level playing field.
- Until today, 16 states have ratified the HKC completing the first prerequisite for the implementation of this regulation.
- Procedures described in the HKC are considered as suitable, similarly EU-SRR; the key challenge comes with interpretation and the enforcement.
- Certification is not a good indicator whether a ship recycling yard is doing or not a good job.
- Territorial applicability of Basel Convention and Basel Ban Amendment is key factor for compliance.
- EU-flagged vessels have to be recycled in EU-listed facilities.
- Individual planning and supervision is strongly recommended for any yard.
- Without proper IHM, no safe and sound ship recycling is possible; thus further common sense and understanding are vital.
- IHM certification often tends tho be more business oriented rather than quality oriented
- Wreck removal remains a grey area and an important issue for consideration as well
Henning Gramann, CEO, GSR Services GmbH, stressed that a well developed and maintained IHM is the pre-requisite for safe and sound ship recycling. The position of a ship when or after a recycling decision has been taken dictates the legal framework which needs to be obeyed. Hong Kong Convention provides clear requirements and good guidance for an industry which in many cases has improved significantly in the last decade.
Dr. Konstantinos Galanis, Chairman, International Ship Recycling Association, argued that safe and environmentally sound ship recycling in compliance to the highest standards integrates the maritime sustainability. The prevailing conditions and means create new challenges and opportunities that should be further assessed and improved to ensure that ship’s life is optimized under a holistic approach and implementation.
Anna Kalogianni, Claims Executive, Standard Club, noted that the absence of one international and uniformly applicable convention for the recycling of ships can make this a difficult field to navigate for operators. If shipowners get this wrong practice has shown that there may be financial or reputational damages. Compliance with the applicable regime is therefore important. Shipowners need also to be aware of their obligations towards their P&I club in case the ship is to be recycled.
Panel 7: ESG towards Sustainable Shipping
Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) and competitiveness, transparency and sustainability are two sides of the same coin. Whether regarded as new trend or as necessity, organizations that wish to thrive in the global maritime community should consider embedding ESG effectively into their strategy for growth and competitiveness.
ESG at a glance
- All different stakeholders should collaborate equally and fully in ESG initiatives; the first step for everyone is to identify what ESG is and how it can apply to their organization.
- There are many tools to assist companies/ organizations in their path towards ESG and training can help to overcome any challenges.
- Shipping should focus on lessons learned from other industries to get inspired but try to find solutions that fit to its activities.
- Every company must engage in ESG; otherwise will left behind. Nonetheless, there must be a level playing field. In that respect, financial support from related parties is vital.
- Every company that takes action into ESG, should take ownership of what its actions. As such, industry should set the expectations so that everyone is engaged in the process and contributes significantly.
- Decarbonization, digitalization, innovation are among the emerging challenges for a more sustainable industry for which a new mindset is essential.
- Regulation, green financing and investment in human capital with training of the new skills are among the key priorities.
Carleen Lyden Walker, Co-Founder/Executive Director, IMO Goodwill Maritime Ambassador North American Marine Environment Protection Association (NAMEPA), provided an overview of the opportunities and tools for industry to meet sustainability goals and expectations. She also offered examples of initiatives that are currently being deployed to move industry towards a sustainable future, highlighting the power of collaboration and partnerships to meet, if not exceed, the demand and expectations for change.
Dr. Kostas G. Gkonis, Secretary General, Intercargo, highlighted that companies across all industries will have to change more in the next 15 years than in the past 100 years and shipping will not be an exception. The. ESG encompasses adaptation to strategy and execution and top of all governance and leadership. He also highlighted that it is time for collaboration. Companies that continue to operate in their usual mode and their own will be left behind; this is a promising era of all times and especially shipping will retain its prominent role in serving humanity’s essential needs, he concluded.
Jan Fransen, Executive Director, Green Award Foundation, mentioned that time is changing very rapidly now and the challenges ahead are many. The UN SDGs can be used as a guidance for the shipping companies to get the right direction towards a more sustainable future. Considering that all businesses depend on finance and competitiveness, sustainability is not an easy task; thus working together is essential. He also highlighted important aspects to consider in order all stakeholders jointly to embrace a new approach towards ESG and sustainability.
Stavros Meidanis, Managing Director & Chief Sustainability Officer, Capital-Executive Ship Management Corp, stressed that a sustainability strategy is not solely defined as a strategy to mitigate risks. A sustainability strategy is aiming to drive transformations and adapt processes and practices to market environments, witnessing profound social and regulatory changes from an ESG perspective. ESG performance is now impacting the decisions of investors in the capital market and the ability of shipping companies to access financing.
Maria Kyratsoudi, Business Development Manager, ABS, mentioned that minimizing environmental risk and associated operating costs, engaging motivated people, gaining access to green financing as well as to new markets and segments and enhancing investment returns by allocating capital to more promising and more sustainable opportunities are some of the ways that a strong ESG proposition can create value.
Panel 8: LNG as a fuel
Many consider LNG as a bridge fuel and others see it a more lasting solution in the decarbonization mix. LNG may be the best way today to accommodate the zero carbon fuels of tomorrow. Shell LNG Outlook for 2020, presented that the global LNG demand increased by 12.5% to 359 mtons in 2019, an important increase that boosts LNG’s role in the switch towards a lower-carbon energy system.
Why LNG as a fuel:
- Immediate GHG reductions
- Meets IMO 2030 targets with EEDI & operational measures
- Long-term – IMO 2050 targets achievable through use of bioLNG & synthetic LNG as drop-in fuels
- Lower risk pathway
- Enabler for other alternative fuels
- LNG fueled vessels due to cryogenic equipment can facilitate a plethora of zero carbon fuels such as
- Ammonia (with future retrofit), Bio-Methane, Synthetic Methane
- Fully in line with the spirit of Poseidon Principles which call for CAPEX investment in order to avoid a premature end of useful economic life of an emission challenged ship
Steve Esau, General Manager, SEA\LNG, noted that LNG uptake as a marine fuel is accelerating, driven by regulation, economics and availability. Compared with traditional marine fuels, LNG offers immediate emissions benefits and unparalleled local emissions reductions, he highlighted.
Carmelo Cartalemi, Business Development General Manager, WinGD, shared feedback on their engine installation, a second generation engine technology, that slashes methane emissions while providing increased efficiency in gas and diesel mode.
Lampros Nikolopoulos, Projects & Dry Docking Engineer, Euronav Shipmanagement Ltd, provided an overview of the design, maintenance and operational aspects of LNG Fuelled Vessels (Tankers) and discussed key challenges.
Antonis Trakakis, Technical Director, Marine, RINA, assessed that with rapidly expanding bunkering infrastructure and technical maturity, LNG can serve as an immediate start now and as the host of any new fuel, when it will start becoming available in the future, therefore it is the right selection for new ships today.
Panayiotis Mitrou, Global Gas Segment Manager, Lloyd’s Register, discussed LNG as a marine fuel within the context of ‘shipping transition test bed’. Placing on the Eastern Mediterranean canvas the projects that transform the environmental and energy profile of the area, with Poseidon Med II leading the race, he presented the factors that will play a pivotal role to the methane molecule’s longevity.
Panel 9: LPG as a fuel
The environmental performance of LPG as a fuel is close to LNG with some advantages, both of them being fossil fuels. LPG is the best dual fuel option for the significant existing fleet of LPG carriers. Furthermore bunkering is one of the key benefits of LPG with import/export terminals and LPG carriers providing a wide network of outlets improving the suitability of the LPG as a marine fuel
Why LPG as a fuel:
- Non renewable – already a long way ahead on the Green Pathway
- Compared to 2020 compliant fuels: 99% less SOx, 15% less CO2, 10% less NOx, 90% less PM
- Meets IMO 2020
- Not a GHG, greatly supports IMO 2050 GHG strategy
- More than 1,000 existing storage facilities and terminals
- More than 700 small carriers for ship to ship bunkering
- All LPG terminals can become supply points
- STS operations are possible around the world and can provide LPG impetus
Nikos Xydas, Technical Director, World LPG Association, suggested that with the increasing availability of renewable LPG, bioLPG, as a drop in fuel, with up to 80% additional carbon emission savings, and even more as blend with other renewable products, offers an excellent pathway to a net zero carbon future.
Kjeld Aabo, Director New Technologies Sales and Promotion Two-stroke Marine, MAN Energy Solutions, said that LPG as a marine fuel was applied to almost 100% of VLGCs ordered in 2020; it has several references within handy-size and mid-size LPG carriers as well, however slightly slower transition compared to VLGCs.
Kristof Coppé, Project Manager, EXMAR, gave an insight in the use of LPG as fuel for the main engine, more specifically for two new 88,000 m3 VLGCs which will be built, owned and operated by EXMAR and chartered to EQUINOR. The decision made so as vessels to have sufficient flexibility to trade in the most economical and environmental friendly way.
Peter Van de Graaf, Account Manager Belgium, Lloyd’s Register Marine & Offshore, presented an overview of the status of Class and Statutory requirements for the use of LPG as fuel in order obtain the appropriate Class notation. Also, it was explained how Class is handling novel projects by risk-based design, named RBD and what is required to go this route.
Panel 10: Ammonia as a fuel
Although there are many advantages from using ammonia as a marine fuel, there are also many challenges around which need to be controlled by technical and regulatory measures in order ammonia to become a feasible solution for a carbon-free shipping economy.
Why Ammonia as a fuel:
- ammonia can substitute pure hydrogen for storage
- there is experience regarding its handling
- easy to liquefy and transport
- power density comparable with other liquid fuels
- non-flammable & non-explosive but highly toxic and corrosive
- can be used in diesel engines, gas turbines, fuel cells
- mature production
- higher volumetric energy density than hydrogen-powered
Trevor Brown, Executive Director, Ammonia Energy Association, mentioned that gigawatt scale ammonia production plants are now being announced weekly because ammonia provides a pathway to market for renewable energy, which was previously constrained within the electricity grid, and for hydrogen, which was previously constrained to local and near-term uses.
Dr. John Kokarakis, Vice President Technology & Business Development Hellenic-BS-ME Zone, Bureau Veritas, stated that ammonia is promulgated as a carbon-free alternative fuel. Burned in ICE, it requires unknown percentage of carbonaceous pilot fuel. Hard to burn, highly toxic and corrosive. There is ample experience on ammonia handling and transportation. Compared to its twin brother the LPG, it has comparable CAPEX but much higher OPEX.
Dr. Michail Cheliotis, Research Associate, Maritime Safety Research Centre, University of Strathclyde, highlighted the benefits of using ammonia as a fuel, such as: existing infrastructure and production developments driven by other industries; easier storage and transportation compared with alternatives; Highest volumetric density of zero carbon fuels; and; very good H2 storage vector.
Jan Flores, Vice President, NETSCo, Inc.,noted that while the technology to use ammonia as fuel is still in development, it is currently a traded commodity with infrastructure is already in place, as well as ammonia storage and transportation regulations. Also, there is a lot of technology already created in the engineering for engine conversions for LNG and LPG, which can be leveraged for ammonia.
Panel 11: Methanol as a fuel
Methanol is a strong option in the battle of alternative fuels It is proven as a clean, efficient and safe fuel that offers immediate decarbonization benefits with substantial net GHG reductions, full compliance with IMO2020 and a pathway that leads to net carbon neutrality.
Why Methanol as a fuel:
- occupies smaller space relative to compressed hydrogen
- attractive economics
- clean exhaust emissions
- potential to be carbon negative
- minimal maintenance
- scalable simple/ familiar feedstock storage
- retrofits economically viable
- availability in over 100 ports today
Greg Dolan, CEO, Methanol Institute, provided a presentation entitled “Methanol: A Future Proof Marine Fuel” to illustrate the many benefits that methanol can offer to industry. Methanol is emerging as a leading alternative fuel for shipping. It is produced from a wide range of conventional and renewable feedstocks. As a marine fuel, methanol can be used in both newbuild and existing vessels.
Berit Hinnemann, Senior Innovation Project Manager, Technical Innovation, A.P. Møller – Mærsk A/S, presented Maersk’s journey towards decarbonization and the fuels of the future. Maersk has a goal of net carbon neutral operations in 2050 and decarbonization is a strategic imperative. In this respect, Maersk assess many options (biofuels, methanol, alcohol-lignin fuels, ammonia) and it will build the world’s first carbon-neutral liner vessel with start of operations in 2023.
Stamatis Fradelos, Regional Bulk Carriers Segment Director, Maritime – South East Europe, Middle East & Africa, DNV Hellas, explained that according to DNV Maritime Forecast to 2050, ammonia and methanol are likely the two dominant future fuels for deep sea shipping, and the choice between them depends upon input price.Methanol is a liquid fuel already widely carried as cargo, making it relatively suitable for retrofit since it can be burned in a suitably adapted marine diesel engine.
Garry Noonan, Head of Transition Technologies, Ardmore Shipping Services (Ireland) Limited, supported that the hydrogen generator solution makes the hydrogen generator/fuel cell combination a near-term reality and an attractive choice. In fact, fuel cells already have many advantages over diesel engines, such as fuel efficiency, low maintenance and repair costs, and no other harmful emissions such as particulates, SOX and NOX.
Douglas Raitt, Regional Advisory Services Manager, Lloyd’s Register, mentioned that methanol offers various pathways and can be used immediatly as it does not depend on the other alternative options. Citing his experience with working with The Methanol Institute, he highlighted that there are many beneftis with regards to bunkering procedures; namely, handling menthanol is not much different from handling gas oil, he said.
Panel 12: Hydrogen as a fuel
Hydrogen is building momentum globally as probably the cleanest of all fuel solutions for the future; in that regard several shipping players have recently issued a joint letter to the EU Commission urging to promote the use of green hydrogen by ships as part of its upcoming maritime fuel law.
Why Hydrogen as a fuel
- Enables zero carbon and zero pollution operation
- 27 ongoing green H2 bunkering projects across 28 North Sea ports
- compliant with all future environmental regulations
- energy component remains zero-carbon
- the only maritime fuel expected as zero GHG by the Zero Emissions Ship Technology Association
- No N2O which has 300 x GHG impacts of CO2
- the only viable store of energy that is non- toxic and zero emission
Madadh MacLaine, Secretary General, Zero Emissions Ship Technology Association, presented briefly the Association which founded in March 2019 and involves members which have project or technology that is Zero GHG Emissions at a ship level with miniml upstream impacts and are committed to achieving zero emissions in commercial shipping. As explaind, the Association supports that green hydrogen is the only future proof fuel and is compliant with all future environmental regulations.
Jogchum Bruinsma, Project Manager Maritime Power Systems, Nedstack, highlighted that the use of hydrogen as a clean, renewable and therefore sustainable fuel would be a major step forward for a more sustainable shipping. When hydrogen is used in fuel cell systems, it creates true zero emission power generation. Hydrogen as a fuel in combination with fuel cells are a feasible alternative for propulsion and power generation.
Joseph Pratt, CEO/CTO, Golden Gate Zero Emissions Marine, explained why hydrogen makes sense. Hydrogen enables zero carbon and zero pollution operation. However, for wide adoption within the maritime industry, widely available hydrogen fueling infrastructure, or awareness of existing hydrogen infrastructure are vital as well as a set of safety codes and standards.
Konstantinos Theofanis Markou, General Manager, ClassNK, noted that currently, manufactures which have business experiences of fuel cells for land use are expanding into maritime section. As explained, ClassNK offers rules for hydrogen fuel cell ships and it will release a revised version of Guidelines for Fuel Cell Systems On Board Ships at 2022.
Panel 13: Exploring wind as an option
A 2017 EU-commissioned report predicted up to 10,000 wind propulsion installations within the next decade alone while many are the companies which have already engaged with, tested and installed wind propulsion systems. This is certainly a critical decade for wind propulsion developments as we have entered the path towards decarbonization.
Why wind propulsion
- offers a technically and commercially viable near-term solution that can already save 5% to- 20%
- cost-effective, not depend on alterations to port infrastructure
- improved operational autonomy in mitigating the risks and uncertainties of being commercially dependent on other alternative fuels.
- assists the global fleet in reducing net emissions in the short-term, reducing the carbon-intensity of the whole fleet, and better enable the meeting of IMO GHG reduction targets.
- wind technology solutions are increasingly available today
- most wind-systems are fully automated and integrated into the energy management systems of the ships.
- can be deployed either as wind-assist for primarily motor vessels or as a primary propulsor for newly built ships outfitted with auxiliary engines.
Gavin Allwright, Secretary General, International Windship Association (IWSA), referred to the benefits of wind propulsion as well as the existing projects and collaborations to drive this alternative source of power. As informed, by the end of Q1/Q2 2021, 13 ocean going vessels with wind-assist systems will be installed while many more installations are taking place. In total, more WPT vessels will be in operation than all new alternative fuelled ships combined, excluding tankers & LNG.
Joe Plunkett, Senior Engineer, Anemoi Marine Technologies, presented the role of Rotor Sail technology in decarbonisation. Providng an overview of Rotor Sail technology, he explained how it works and why it’s suitable for commercial shipping while he also referred to regulation and other factors driving uptake of new technologies such as Rotor Sails
Martial Claudepierre, Global Market Leader Sustainable Shipping, Bureau Veritas, presented several BV classed vessels with wind propulsion and explained the available specific class approach which is developed for modern wind propulsion, noting that the design review stage and inspections in service are two important challenges towards. He also talked about additional class notations for wind propulsion systems including running and standing part.
Prof. Dr-Ing Orestis Schinas, Partner, HHX.blue, said that current regulatory requirements on air quality and emissions dictate hybrid propulsion solutions. Diverse propulsion requirements lead in diverse combinations and decisions on fuels and main engines. Wind-assisted technologies are already tested in actual operation and can save >10% of fuel consumption.
Panel 14: Exploring nuclear as an option
Nuclear is an issue of the past as the industry is maturing, arriving to advanced atomic with very promising 4th generation reactors. With the use of advanced atomic, ships will not be releasing any emissions, as it there are no SOx, NOx, CO2 or particulates. In fact, considering the full energy cycle atomic is millions of times more power-dense and cleaner compared to either fossil fuels or popular alternatives in the likes of methanol, ammonia and hydrogen.
International regulatory framework for nuclear powered merchant ships
- United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), 1994
- IMO Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS), 1974
- Chapter VIII Nuclear Ships
- IMO resolution A.491 (XII) Code of Safety for Nuclear Merchant Ships, 1981
- Chapter IX International Safety Management (ISM) Code, 1998
- IMO/IAEA Safety Recommendations on the Use of Ports by Nuclear Merchant Ships,1980
- IMO Convention on the Liability of Operators of Nuclear Ships, 1962 (did not enter into force)
- 2004 Protocol to Amend the Paris Convention, (adopted 2004 but not yet entered into force)
- The revised Paris Convention will recognize the concerns of coastal States which allow maritime shipments of nuclear substances through their waters by including provisions to ensure that where a nuclear incident occurs in the exclusive economic zone of a Paris Convention state, jurisdiction over claims for nuclear damage arising from that incident shall lie only with the courts of that coastal state.
Panos Zachariadis, Technical Director, Atlantic Bulk Carriers, presented the case of why Nuclear is necessary for decarbonization. 4th generation nuclear mini reactors, now in porotype stages, need no active cooling (no possibility of meltdown), are small and maintenance free, have reduced radioactive wastes and can use current reactor wastes or nuclear weapons as fuel.
Edmund Hughes, Director, Green Marine Associates Ltd, discussed why nuclear power is considered as a zero-emission energy source for maritime transport by explaining IMO’s vision for shipping is decarbonisation by the end of this century, key options and issues of energy for shipping, key challenges of the 4th propulsion revolution and the international regulatory framework surrounding nuclear powered merchant ships.
Giulio Gennaro, Technical Director, Core-Power, cited the example of a capesize carrying 180,000 tons of iron ore from Brazil to China on a 60 day round voyage to explain the operational benefits of the ship propulsion revolution. Producing electric power with clean sources, in which Advanced Atomic will play a fundamental role, can drive the way to decarbonization.