A report from DNV says that using LNG as fuel is the most efficient and economical way for ships to meet air emissions requirements in the U.S. and Canada that take effect in August 2012. Environmental Control Areas (ECA) will gradually be enforced along the North American coastlines. They will have full force in 2015 and 2016, leaving shipowners a limited number of options for modifications to their ships if they want to continue trade in North America.
"Domestic ships in North America have three options to meet new emissions control regulations; install CO2 scrubbers, burn low sulfur fuel or switch to LNG fuel for the ship's propulsion," says Kenneth Vareide, director of operations for DNV North America Maritime.
Mr. Vareide says that an LNG fueled propulsion plant may add about $3.6 million to the cost of a typical domestic cargoship, however, over the operating life of the vessel, at today's gas rates, LNG fuel would save more than $4 million over CO2 scrubbers and $12 million for low sulfur fuel."
Specifically, the use of LNG fuel for a ship would reduce nitrous oxide (NOx) emissions by 85-90%, sulfur dioxide (SO2) and particulate matter by almost 100%, and it would result in 15-20% less greenhouse gas emissions.
DNV's report is the first study of U.S. and Canadian domestic shipping and recommendations to meet new environmental legislation for North America.
"LNG is particularly an attractive alternative for vessels with a fixed trading pattern, which should fit well with the biggest segments; ferries, offshore support vessels and tug/push boats. Besides, much of the coastal trade in the U.S. is fixed in its trade pattern and we have been in contact with several companies that are considering LNG for newbuildings and conversions," says Mr. Vareide.
You can access the report HERE
February 21, 2011