The case for LNG as an economically and environmentally viable fuel source is strong, especially for the short sea shipping sector, claims DNV President Tor Svensen.
Addressing reporters on the opening day of Posidonia, Mr Svensen said heavy fuel oil was not an option for future shipping operating within ECAs and alternatives had to be introduced. A DNV study, he said, concluded that LNG was the obvious alternative to satisfy future ECA requirements, particularly for short sea shipping.
The EU has already introduced 0.1% sulphur as a maximum level for a ship’s fuel when in port and on inland waterways. As of July 1st, this year, the maximum level of sulphur in fuel is set at 1.0% in Emission Control Areas and the requirement will be further tightened to 0.1% by 2015.
“There are at least three ways of solving these challenges,” Mr Svensen said. “Low sulphur fuel can be used and scrubbers can be installed to remove the sulphur. Or the operator can switch to LNG.
“LNG represents no technical obstacles. Economically, it is better than the alternatives and it is an environmental winner, so why wait?,” he said. “We can move faster if we want to and there are economic opportunities for those ship owners that dare to be among the front runners.”
Mr Svensen added: “DNV is struggling to understand why the shipping industry is not moving faster and why ship owners are not seeing the opportunities. LNG as a fuel for ships is commercially viable and will address important envoironmental concerns.
“As a class society, DNV will try to actively influence the whole shipping industry. And we will certainly continue to invest in technology and expertise to support the conversion to LNG fuel. DNV will assist ship owners in developing business cases for LNG in the years to come.
“The age of LNG is here and short sea shipping in the most obvious place to start,” he concluded.