Green Maritime Methanol, a consortium of Dutch shipping providers and professional bodies, has selected nine ships to participate in its research on methanol as a shipping fuel.
As the shipping industry works towards meeting ambitious maritime CO2 reduction targets set by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), development of low emission and environmentally friendly marine fuels has become a growing priority. The Green Maritime Methanol consortium, whose partners include the Ports of Amsterdam and Rotterdam, the Royal Netherlands Naval Institute and the IMO’s Maritime Knowledge Centre, aims to evaluate the relative efficacy and cost differentials of renewable methanol fuel in comparison with low sulphur marine diesel.
The nine ships selected for the research project, from operators including the Royal Netherlands Navy and Van Oord, range in size from 40m to 160m; with tonnage between 300 dwt and 23,000 dwt and installed power between one MW and 12MW. Each ship represents a specific operational profile, with the overall aim of providing insight into the feasibility of converting each profile type to methanol fuel. The study will cover both existing ships and newly built cargo vessels, support vessels, ferries and dredgers operating along the coast.
Each distinct operational scenario will be analysed based on a number of factors, with the aim of identifying optimal configurations from technical, economic and operational perspectives. Members of the Green Maritime Methanol consortium – which recently welcomed international certification body Bureau Veritas, professional services provider Lloyd’s Register and the Royal Netherlands Shipowners’ Association into its ranks – hope to work co-operatively in order to develop methanol as a viable maritime fuel, aided by a policy of open exchange of data and knowledge between consortium members.
The Green Maritime Methanol project, which is supported by non-profit body TKI Maritiem and the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy, will run until December 2020.