The European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) has published a guidance document outlining best practice for the planning and operational stages of LNG bunkering.
Aimed at port authorities and administrations, the paper highlights a number of steps to ensure safe implementation of LNG bunker solutions and guidance to plan for upcoming regulation.
“Port Authorities are here seen as fundamental players in the middle of a two-fold driver for the development of LNG as fuel in ports. On one hand the expected increase in demand from LNG fuelled ships and, on the other hand, the regulatory requirements,” the EMSA report’s authors state.
Based on extensive consultation with stakeholders, including port authorities, maritime administrations, terminal, gas suppliers and government representatives and with the LNG experts sub-group of the European Sustainable Shipping Forum (ESSF), the document aims to guide authorities through all stages of LNG bunkering process.
EMSA notes that guidance was prepared in close cooperation with the European Commission (DG MOVE), member states and industry within the context of the European Sustainable Shipping Forum and Directive 2014/94/EU on the 'Deployment of an Alternative Fuel Infrastructure”
LNG bunkering growth forecast
In review of existing solutions for small scale LNG bunkering installations, involving LNG fuel trucks, barges and small scale fixed shore installations, and several challenges which have been addressed recently, EMSA estimates that the sector is now primed for growth.
“An increase in LNG bunkering activities is therefore foreseen, with more ports offering LNG bunkering, also as a competitive advantage… Notwithstanding industry preparations for LNG Bunkering it is important to provide Port Authorities with the necessary information and suggested good practice for this type of operation,” the agency states.
EMSA also notes that the functional and technical requirements that have been developed are key to creating a procedural framework both for LNG bunkering operations and for LNG bunkering equipment.