Maersk Consecutive Seventh Strategic Methanol Partnership

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AP Moller-Maersk and China’s Debo Energy have formed a partnership to develop a bio-methanol project for Maersk in China, which is expected to provide Maersk with 200,000 tonnes of the fuel each year from Q3 2024, says an article published in Riviera.

Continuous Supply Of Green Methanol

The feedstock for the green bio-methanol fuel will be agricultural residues, and Maersk said it intends to offtake the full volume produced by Debo.

AP Moller-Maersk has made a series of moves in recent months to ensure a supply of green methanol, after committing to build up to 12 carbon-neutral methanol-fuelled container vessels.

Seventh Agreement

The agreement with Debo Energy is the seventh strategic methanol partnership Maersk has agreed in its mission to boost global production and supply of green methanol.

Net-Zero Emissions

In 2018, Maersk announced its ambition to run a carbon-neutral fleet by 2050 and later pushed forward its goal to 2040, when it said it intends to have a fleet that generates net-zero emissions.

In August 2021, Maersk committed to building its first potentially carbon-neutral vessels.

Methanol-Powered Vessels

More recently, Mærsk agreed a letter of intent with multinational Danish energy company Ørsted to develop a Power-to-X-facility on the US Gulf coast to secure fuel production and offtake for Mærsk’s fleet of 12 methanol-powered vessels. 

300,000 Tonnes Of E-Methanol

According to the agreement, Ørsted will develop a 675-MW Power-to-X facility on the US Gulf coast that will produce approximately 300,000 tonnes of e-methanol (or green methanol derived from clean fuel sources) per year, which Mærsk will offtake for its methanol-powered vessels.

Renewable Energy

The facility will be powered by approximately 1.2 GW of renewable energy from new onshore wind and solar PV farms.

The biogenic carbon needed to produce e-methanol will be extracted through carbon capture at one or more large point sources.

Record-Breaking Offtake Agreement

The project is targeted to be commissioned in H2 2025, and a final investment decision is to be made late 2023.

The 300,000 tonnes of e-methanol would represent a record-breaking offtake agreement for green fuels in the maritime industry.

Agreement With Largest Producers Of Methanol

Mærsk has also signed a green methanol supply agreement with Swiss-headquartered Proman AG, one of the world’s largest producers of methanol. 

Container Vessels Order

In 2021, Mærsk placed a newbuild order with Hyundai Heavy Industries for a series of up to a dozen 16,000-TEU container vessels.

Eight of the vessels are part of the initial, firm order, with the first of the vessels set for delivery Q1 2024.

An option for four additional vessels could be confirmed for 2025, the company said. 

Dual-Fuel Vessels

Mærsk said the dual-fuel vessels will replace older vessels, generating annual CO2 emissions savings of around a million tonnes for the company.

Challenges

The carbon neutrality of the vessels, tied to the availabilty of carbon-neutral methanol, is not guaranteed, and Mærsk said sourcing the fuel would be “challenging,” initially.

Carbon-Neutral Methanol Production

“Mærsk will operate the vessels on carbon-neutral e-methanol or sustainable bio-methanol as soon as possible.

Sourcing an adequate amount of carbon-neutral methanol from day one in service will be challenging, as it requires a significant production ramp up of proper carbon-neutral methanol production, for which Mærsk continues to engage in partnerships and collaborations with relevant players,” the company said.

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Source: Riviera

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