Spanish gas specialist Repsol has started construction on its delayed LNG bunker terminal in the north of Spain.
The terminal at the port of Bilbao will feature a cryogenic tank with capacity to store 1,000 cubic metres of fuel and is scheduled to be commissioned in the first half of next year.
“The construction of this terminal is part of the long-term collaboration agreement signed in 2019 between Repsol and Brittany Ferries for the supply of LNG to their operations in Spain,” a spokesperson for the port authority explained.
Repsol will use the LNG bunkering terminal to service to two Brittany Ferries vessels – the Salamanca and the Santoña - due to come into service in 2022 and 2023 respectively.
Connecting Europe facilities
The project will involve investment of over €10 million, co-funded by the European Commission through the Connecting Europe Facilities Programme. It will be the seventh operational LNG reception and storage plant in the country when it launches next year.
“According to data from the Iberian Association of Natural Gas for Mobility (Gasnam), the number of LNG-powered ships worldwide currently stands at 221, a 70% increase compared to the 131 ships that were in operation in 2018,” the Bilbao Port’s spokesperson added.
The authority predicts that switching the Brittany Ferries’ lines between Bilbao and Santander will reduce annual CO2, emissions by approximately 73,000 tonnes, equivalent to the annual emissions of more than 50,000 cars.
Alternative fuel infrastructures
Alongside the development of new LNG infrastructure, Repsol also recently announced progress elsewhere in its alternative fuel programme, producing renewable hydrogen from biomethane for the first time. The breakthrough was achieved at Repsol’s Cartagena Industrial Complex, where 10 tonnes of renewable hydrogen were produced from 500 MWh of biomethane.
“The biomethane used as raw material was obtained from urban solid waste,” Repsol commented. “This first industrial tests carried out by Repsol will also serve as an example for developing the system of guarantees of origin for renewable gases to be implemented in Spain.”
Repsol is promoting the creation of large regional consortiums to promote major alternative fuel projects, such as the Basque Hydrogen Corridor, and the Spanish Ministry of Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge recently released a draft royal decree for public information.
Headquartered in Madrid, Repsol is a fully integrated energy and petrochemical’s firm and employs more than 24,000 employees worldwide. In September, the firm began operating its first electrolyzer and plans to expand production to serve synthetic fuels plant that the company will build together with Saudi Aramco.