The 18,000 deadweight-ton “Fure Ven”, a dual-fuel products tanker owned and operated by Furetank Rederi AB of Sweden, has become the first non-US-flagged vessel to bunker LNG at a US port.
Eagle LNG Partners, the US leader in small-scale LNG development in Florida and elsewhere, supplied the fuel to the Swedish-flagged “Fure Ven” at its terminal and fuel station at Jacksonville in Florida.
“This milestone paves the way for more international trading vessels to bunker at Jacksonville Port Authority (Jaxport), marking the latest tangible demonstration of LNG as a safe and reliable fuel solution,” said Eagle.
“It also builds confidence in the case for LNG to help the shipping industry meet increasingly stringent environmental regulations, while still generating substantial cost savings,” added the US company.
Furetank is owned by the Höglund family and is a founding partner of the Scandinavian commercial joint venture, the Gothia Tankers Alliance, comprising 32 vessels from various small shipping lines in sizes of 6,000 dwt to 37,000 dwt.
For the US bunkering operation, the vessel transited the St. Johns River and called at the Talleyrand Marine Terminal, which also serves the 7dUS shipping line, Crowley Maritime Corp.
“Eagle LNG Partners safely transferred 225 metric tonnes of LNG to the vessel from their on-site storage facility, with the bunkering taking less than seven hours to complete,” said the US firm.
“The tanker was laden with renewable diesel cargo for Preem, the largest petroleum and biofuels company headquartered in Sweden,” it added.
GAC Group, a global provider of logistics and marine services with Swedish heritage, assisted all parties by broking the LNG fuel and providing ship agency services to the vessel during her voyage across the Atlantic.
It was the first time that GAC’s Bunker Fuels division had secured a deal to supply LNG as a marine fuel.
The “Fure Ven” is one of Furetank’s V-Series, a new generation of product and chemical tankers introduced in 2018, which leverage innovative design features and LNG to deliver a fuel reduction of approximately 40 percent.
Furetank said these climate-smart vessels have also achieved substantial reductions in emissions.
“As early as 2014, Furetank decided to convert one of our vessels to LNG propulsion,” explained Lars Höglund, Chief Executive of Furetank.
“We note with pleasure that LNG bunkering is becoming available in more and more places, not least the US, and we are confident that investing in the V-series particularly contributes to a cleaner environment worldwide,” he added.
Sean Lalani, President of Eagle LNG, said his company was delighted to have been part of the re-fueling.
“As a pioneer in LNG bunkering and a global leader in small-scale LNG, the team at Eagle LNG is proud to have partnered with the trailblazers at Furetank and GAC, along with numerous crucial stakeholders including JAXPORT, Crowley Maritime and the US Coast Guard, to safely accomplish this first-ever LNG bunkering in the US of a non-US flagged vessel,” explained Sean Lalani
“It is only fitting that this first bunkering happens in Jacksonville where JAXPORT, local officials, and the community have embraced the shipping industry’s transition to the more sustainable, affordable LNG,” he stated.
Eagle LNG also praised the “pioneering spirit” of its partners at Crowley Maritime, with whom it has completed over 100 bunkerings in North Florida.
“We look forward to utilizing our experience and assets to bunker more international vessels from this facility and our future operations in the Caribbean Basin in the coming months and years,” Lalani concluded.