Plans for LNG barges bunker station by 2016
Antwerp Port Authority wants barges to be able to bunker with LNG at a permanent station by 2016. Compared with diesel, the fuel mainly used by European barges at the moment, LNG is much cleaner.
Barges have already been able to use truck-to-ship bunkering for LNG since 2012, but by building a permanent station the Port Authority aims to make LNG constantly available and so encourage the industry to switch to this much cleaner fuel: emissions from vessels powered by LNG contain hardly any particulates, and NOx emissions are also drastically reduced.
In order to achieve this the Port Authority has issued a European call for tenders to build the LNG bunker station, which must also be able to serve trucks. The Port Authority is also allowing for the possibility that a private company may take the necessary initiative to provide LNG bunkering at a permanent station.
By making LNG permanently available the Port Authority hopes that the industry will press ahead with the necessary investments to switch to the new type of fuel. The port regulations were amended at the beginning of this year to cover LNG bunkering, thus providing a regulatory framework for truck-to-ship, ship-to-ship and terminal-to-ship bunkering with LNG in the port of Antwerp.
Construction of the bunker station is partially subsidised by the LNG Master Plan for the Rhine-Main-Danube, a project that forms part of the European Commission’s TEN-T programme aimed at promoting the use of LNG as fuel and as cargo for barges. For this purpose Antwerp Port Authority is collaborating closely with its counterparts in Basel, Mannheim, Rotterdam and Strasbourg.
Source and Image Credit: Port of Antwerp