What the Ship Owners & Ship Managers Prefer – Cold Ironing or Low Sulfur Fuels?



A couple of years ago – there was a huge buzz about the new innovative concept called “Cold Ironing”. The entire Maritime world believed that this energy efficient breakthrough would definitely reduce the carbon footprint and thus achieve the emission restrictions in any port.

Did your ship “COLD IRON” during a port stay?

Some of the cruise ships “COLD IRONED” in North American ports whereas the merchant ships are yet to get such opportunity. The very concept of Cold Ironing was devised and designed to suit the cruise industry and not the merchant ships until this moment. Nevertheless – some of the Latest generation merchant vessels including but not limited to LNG tankers do have the facility to “COLD IRON” herself. 

Is “COLD IRONING” becoming redundant?

It is to be emphasized that the “Cold Ironing” facility is not available in all ports, whereas the Ultra Low Sulfur fuels or Low Sulfur Gas oils are. This point makes the vessel owners or the charterers to look forward with Low sulfur fuels. If more ports get equipped with the Cold Ironing facility (which incurs an expensive installation costs), then the ships can look forward to Cold Iron when they are along side. We reported earlier that port of Hong Kong looks forward to Seattle to replicate the Concept of Cold Ironing. Port of Hong Kong with its upcoming new emission standards will help reduce the total emissions of SO2 and respirable suspended particulates by 12 per cent and 6 per cent respectively, thus contributing to the improvement of Hong Kong’s air quality and a reduction of associated health risks.

More Interesting information on Hong Kong Emission Standards  – “Ocean-Going Vessels Required To Switch To Clean Fuel While At Berth“.


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