Hamburg-based Nauticor GmbH & Co. KG, a leading supplier of liquefied natural gas (LNG) as fuel for shipping, has added to its successful string of bunkering operations with the refuelling of the world’s first container ship retrofitted with an LNG engine, the Wes Amelie, last week, by the LNG bunker supply vessel Kairos. The operation took place in the anchorage area in front of Visby, Sweden.
The transfer of LNG between the two vessels marks an important step in several aspects, with Wes Amelie having received LNG for the first time from a bunker supply vessel and the Baltic Sea in general seeing the first ship-to-ship LNG bunker operation for a vessel of that kind.
Mahinde Abeynaike, CEO of Nauticor, confidently stated, “We are proud that in cooperation with Unifeeder and Wessels Reederei we have been able to provide a state-of-the-art ship-to-ship LNG fuelling solution for Wes Amelie. The successful operation proves again that LNG is becoming a fuel for all segments in the shipping sector and that the availability of the molecules is secured in Northwest Europe. We are happy to support the efforts of those pioneers who are working on establishing LNG as fuel for containerships by providing highest quality standards and cost-efficient LNG supply solutions.”
Wes Amelie, owned by Wessels Reederei based in Haren/Ems, was the first of its kind to run on the environmental-friendly fuel, when the vessel was retrofitted in 2017. Running on a feeder route between Rotterdam and the Baltics, the vessel is operated by Unifeeder, which is providing the largest feeder and shortsea network in Europe.
Hans Staal, Head of Bunker Procurement of Unifeeder, highlighted the importance of this event, “As one of the first movers in the use of LNG as fuel for container vessels, we have a substantial interest in developing a comprehensive LNG supply infrastructure. The development of ship-to-ship supply chains, such as the one offered by Nauticor with Kairos, is an important step towards a more efficient LNG distribution.”
“The container feeder segment is predestined for the use of LNG as marine fuel and ship-to-ship LNG bunkering is an elementary component” stated Christian Hoepfner, Managing Director of Wessels Marine GmbH Wessels Marine GmbH, and confirms the advantages of using LNG as fuel, “Wes Amelie has convincingly shown that the use of LNG substantially benefits the environment along the feeder routes and raises advantages for the operators. Therefore, we are working on a number of similar projects to rapidly expand the fleet of eco-friendly vessels converted to LNG.””
Wessels Marine is a consulting and project development company for the use of LNG (Liquified Natural Gas) as maritime fuel. The service profile covers technical, operational and commercial topics for the use of LNG and serves shipping companies, companies in the shipbuilding supply industry and LNG providers. Wessels Marine currently concentrates on LNG conversions of existing tonnage, newbuilding projects with LNG-based propulsion concepts, expansion of the water-side LNG bunker infrastructure and project-accompanying engineering and consulting services.
Nauticor to bunker LNG for Gothia Alliance
On April 15th, Kairos provided LNG in a ship-to-ship bunker operation to the product tanker, Fure Valö, a vessel of the tanker pool managed by the Gothia Tanker Alliance. The tanker received LNG at the anchorage area of Sandhamn, near the Swedish capital of Stockholm.
The bunker operation, the first offshore ship-to-ship operation to be conducted by the 117 meter long BSV, was conducted under an agreement for the supply of LNG, which was signed at the end of 2018 by Furetank Rederi, a member of the Gothia Tanker Alliance, and Nauticor. The agreement covers the supply of LNG from the BSV Kairos to the LNG-fuelled product tankers, which are owned and operated by members of the Gothia Tanker Alliance, including the retrofitted product tanker Fure West and six newbuild vessels, one of them being Fure Valö.