The government of the Chinese eastern coastal province of Zhejiang has begun a pilot project to test liquefied natural gas (LNG) as marine fuel. The province is located in the Yangtze River Delta, has a strong industrial and technology base, and since the commencement of this century has had a strong focus on marine engineering and technology. The Zhejiang government is seeking ways to reinvigorate the marine segment of its industry in the face of global oversupply and has identified river transport as a development area, specifically to encourage the participation of small and medium sized shipbuilding enterprises to adopt liquefied natural gas (LNG) for vessel propulsion.
At the same time the government has an industry-wide goal of energy saving and emissions reduction, for which LNG used for transportation will make a significant contribution.
An analysis carried out by the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) (May 2013) indicates that total GHG emissions from the use of LNG as a marine fuel, expressed as grams of carbon dioxide-equivalent per million megajoules (gCO2e/MJ) of of LNG fuel delivered vary by 30 percent depending on the bunkering pathway, ranging from a low of 72 g CO2e/MJ to a high of 92 g CO2e/MJ. The pathway with the highest emissions involves the use of LNG produced in existing facilities and delivered via heavy-duty vehicle tanker to remote bunkering sites with on-site storage. The pathway with the lowest emissions uses imported LNG that is directly transferred to a vessel at an import terminal.
(Sources: The State Council Information Office of the People’s Republic of China, ICCT)