Antwerp Port Authority has received positive news from the European Commission concerning its application for a subsidy for LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas). The subsidy will mainly be used to develop and build an LNG bunkering station for barges in the port of Antwerp.
The preparatory study work for the LNG bunkering station has already started, and the objective is to have the station in operation by the end of 2015. Meanwhile, several months after the first barge, the Argonon, bunkered with LNG in the port of Antwerp, the barge Greenstream follows suit at quay 526.
The port of Antwerp has for some time now been preparing intensively to make LNG available to vessels in the port in a safe, efficient way by 2015, when the stricter IMO regulations for sulphur content of fuels come into force. By approving the subsidy application the Commission has demonstrated its confidence in LNG as the fuel of the future.
In March this year, the Port of Antwerp announced it is chairing an initiative focusing on the use of LNG as a marine fuel, an “LNG Fuelled Vessels Working Group”, which has been established under the auspices of The International Association of Ports and Harbors (IAPH)’s World Ports Climate Initiative (WPCI).
Timeline: LNG in the port of Antwerp
January 2013: the Port Authority appoints the classification company Det Norske Veritas to draw up procedures for an operational standard for bunkering vessels in the port in a safe, efficient way.
December 2012: the port of Antwerp scores a Belgian “first” with truck-to-ship bunkering of the barge Argonon.
March 2012: the Port Authority publishes specifications for design of an LNG bunkering vessel, due to be operational by 2015 and able to meet the requirements for LNG bunkering of seagoing ships.
(Source: Port of Antwerp)