LNG only 'viable option' today to tackle shipping's air quality issues

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An improvement in the shipping market resulting a revival of newbuilding orders would see a dramatic increase in the adoption of LNG propulsion, according to SEA\LNG chairman Peter Keller.

While the uptake of LNG as marine fuel has not matched forecasts of a few years ago, Keller, who is both chairman of industry coalition SEA\LNG and executive vice president of TOTE owner of the world’s first LNG-powered containerships, believes it has a strong future a fuel for shipping helping to meet global demands for cleaner air.

“It really is the only thing that solves the air quality issues that the industry has been working on for decades by basically eliminating SOx, eliminating PM (particulate matter), and dramatically reducing NOx. The air quality issues continue to be very important, we see that lingering haze or smog over all of our cities and that’s not good,” he told Seatrade Maritime News in a recent interview.

The IMO’s 0.5% global sulphur cap for marine fuel from 1 January 2020 means that shipowners will either have to use more expensive marine gas oil or hybrid fuels, install scrubbers to continue using high sulphur heavy fuel oil, or switch to alternative fuels such as LNG.

FREE DOWNLOAD - 2020 Sulphur Cap: Is the industry ready for the long-run?

“It’s pretty clear to me and others that LNG is safe, it’s readily available we have tremendous amount supply around the world, and it is cost effective especially when viewed against compliant fuel,” he said.

While technologies such a....

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