The Week In Alt Fuels: LNG Bunker Capacity To Trail Demand

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One LNG supplier launched a new bunker vessel this week, while another ordered two more. Yet, data still indicates an impending deficit in LNG bunker capacity towards at least 2028.

Global LNG demand projections vary widely among suppliers, with Shell forecasting 10 million mt/year in 2028 and Avenir LNG a much higher 16 million mt/year. However, these figures are based on individual company estimates, and actual demand could well be lower depending on market conditions in 2028.

Demand growth projections

In support of demand growth projections, we have seen more LNG-capable vessels being ordered recently. ADNOC Logistics and Services (ADNOC L&S) has ordered eight LNG carriers that will be powered by LNG and expand its fleet of these from 14 to 22 ships.

Canada-based LNG bunker firm Seaspan Energy launched its third 7,600 cbm-capacity LNG bunker vessel this week, with delivery expected next year by China’s CIMC Sinopacific Offshore & Engineering (CIMC SOE). The first two vessels in the series, Seaspan Garibaldi and Seaspan Lions, are slated for delivery later this year.

However, the latest data from DNV’s Alternative Fuel Insight (AFI) platform underscores an impending shortfall in LNG bunkering vessels. DNV data reveals that 499 LNG-capable ships are currently in operation and an additional 559 are on order for delivery towards 2028. With only 56 LNG bunker vessels currently operational and 16 more on order for the same period, including Vitol’s recent order, a significant capacity gap remains apparent.

Shifting focus 

Shifting focus to other alternative fuels, Singapore-based Consort Bunkers has ordered four 7,999 dwt IMO Type 2 chemical tankers from China’s COSCO Shipping Heavy Industry.

Finnish engine maker Wärtsilä will provide ammonia fuel supply and cargo handling systems for two more of Exmar’s upcoming ammonia-capable gas carriers. Wärtsilä’s system is designed for ships transporting liquefied gas cargo, and can supply liquid ammonia as a bunker fuel for a 2-stroke engine.

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Source: Engine.online