China’s first LNG (liquefied natural gas) fuel-powered passenger ship Jinlong Fang is now sailing out of Zixing City on East River and Dongjiang Lake in Hunan Province. It has been heralded as a prelude to passengers vessels on China’s myriad inland waterways embracing this cleaner fuel.
Jinlong Fang is 24.8 meters long, 7 meters wide and designed for cruising at 20 kilometers per hour. It is approved for 90 passengers and for travel on the East (Dongjiang) River which flows through one of China’s top rated (5A) tourist sightseeing areas.
The vessel will now undergo testing and ‘debugging’. It’s operational data will used to inform and promote liquefied natural gas as a clean energy fuel for inland waterways.
The State Maritime Safety Administration agreed to the East River pilot as a project to promote clean energy in 2015. Known as “Hunan Dongjiang Lake ship application LNG overall implementation plan”, the project is being overseen by the Ministry of Transport and forms part of Zixing’s 13th Five Year Plan.
Zixing will immediately commence construction of an LNG refueling station and other supporting facilities on Dongjiang Lake. Over the next two years, it is planned to build 24 90-seat passenger vessels and six 120-seat vessels, all with natural gas engines.
Dongjiang Lake is a major source of drinking water and is has been designated for high-level protection. Accordingly, Zixing embraced the opportunity provided by LNG to significantly reduce water-transport related emissions.
Source: Development and Reform Commission of Hunan Province