Classification society says natural gas could give 20% cut in CO2 emissions at ‘competitive prices’
Italian-based RINA is the latest classification society to publish rules for gas powered ships.
The new RINA new notation Gas Fuelled Ships establishes requirements for the use of liquefied or compressed natural gas (LNG or CNG) on board ship as an alternative to traditional fuels.
It is, RINA says, designed to give the industry a regulatory tool to ensure that the arrangement and installation on board of machinery using this type of fuel are such as to provide a level of integrity, from the point of view of safety and reliability, equivalent to that of a conventional installation.
RINA says that the use of natural gas as a fuel provides the advantages of a total reduction in sulphur oxide emissions, a considerable reduction in nitric oxide emissions, a 20% reduction in carbon dioxide emissions and competitive prices at current costs and estimates for the near future.
The new notation was approved last week at the annual meeting of RINA’s Technical Committee, which provides technical oversight of RINA’s rules for ship classification, in the RINA offices in Rome. The meeting coincides with celebrations ofthe 150th anniversary of the founding of RINA. The meeting was chaired by Umberto Masucci, Chairman of the Ship and Aircraft Brokers and Agents Fund (FAMA) and Vice Chairman of the Federation of the Sea.
Other major new rules discussed included requirements for permanently moored floating units for natural gas liquefaction (FLNG).
The FLNG rules cover floating units for the liquefaction of methane gas, its storage and subsequent offloading onto gas carriers for final transport to the area of destination, generally known as FLNG (Floating LNG) and also FPSO LNG (Floating Production Storage Offshore LNG). This is one of the most interesting technical and commercial sectors in the field of offshore hydrocarbon exploitation.
The flexibility which these units offer in terms of positioning makes them particularly attractive for use where it is necessary to eliminate environmental impact. They remove the need for a large gas liquefaction plant ashore, and they can be relocated to different geographical areas, provided the environmental conditions are similar.
RINA has developed ad-hoc rules for FLNG units, which are contained in the new Chapter 5 of Part E of the “Rules for the classification of Mobile Offshore Units and MODU”. The new RINA rules cover aspects linked to hull structure and plant, related to both ship and processes.