Gothenburg hails LNG bunkering breakthrough

Thursday, 02 November 2017

The 147-metre-long tanker Tern Ocean was refuelled with gas supplied by Skangas at the same time as loading of cargo took place. The dual operations help save time on quayside and improve turnaround for Swedish owner Terntank.

The refuelling operation follows the first ship-to-ship bunkering of LNG at the port less than a month ago and the Gothenburg Port Authority (GPA) reports that LNG bunkering procedures are now so common that they have become “a regular part of operations”.

“Even 5-10 years ago the idea of ships running on liquefied natural gas would have almost been regarded as science fiction. Now we have had seven LNG-bunkerings here in less than a month. It would be no exaggeration to describe this as a major breakthrough,” Dan-Erik Andersson, Gothenburg Port Authority Operations Manager at the Energy Port, said.

Swedish core ports aim for 2025

The GPA is part of a broad alliance of Swedish ports under the EU Alternative Fuels Infrastructure Directive that aim to implement full LNG capabilities by 2025. The Swedish core ports include Luleå, Stockholm, Copenhagen/Malmö and Trelleborg.

“This development has been driven from different directions. We have shipping companies and energy producers that have had the foresight to invest responsibly in the long term, as well as public agencies that have been compliant with regard to the regulatory framework,” Andersson explained.

Swedegas investment to support fuel transition

One of the key drivers for this change has been strict regulation for Baltic maritime traffic and imminent legislation from the IMO and other international bodies to limit emissions.

“The Sulphur Directive introduced in 2015 has spurred us on, and at the Gothenburg Port Authority we have offered incentives in the form of fuel transition discounts and other financial inducements,” Andersson added.

The next phase of development for the Port of Gothenburg, will be the construction of landside pipeline for LNG by Swedish gas grid operator Swedegas next year. The project will also include investment in a larger LNG facility at Gothenburg Energy Port that will supply both the transport and industrial sectors.