Among the Major Environmental Innovations of LNG-powered MSC Cruises’ Vessels Will Be a 50-kilowatt Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Powered by LNG.
Total and MSC Cruises have signed a supply agreement for approximately 45,000 tonnes of LNG each year to be delivered to MSC Cruises’ new LNG-powered cruise ships that will dock in Marseille (France).
This agreement highlights the French maritime industry’s deep collective activity and the excellence of its value chain, from shipbuilding to the procurement of safer marine fuels, as well as local port authorities’ participation in ensuring the vessels’ safe service.
Pierfrancesco Vago, MSC Cruises’ Executive Chairman, said: “This agreement represents a further step in our ongoing journey towards continuously reducing our environmental footprint, for which LNG is currently a crucial component. As we prepare to launch our first of three upcoming LNG-powered cruise ships in 2022, through this key agreement Marseille will become our hub in the Mediterranean for the refuelling of our latest-generation and most environmentally advanced ships.”
Alexis Vovk, President, Marketing & Services at Total, declared: “We are proud to be developing the first LNG bunker supply chain in France, at the port of Marseille-Fos, together with shipping industry leaders such as MSC Cruises with whom we nurture a long-lasting partnership worldwide in the field of bunkering services. Total will continue to step up investments in LNG bunkering to ultimately reach its target of serving more than 10% of the global market. By doing so, we will continue to accompany the energy transition of the shipping industry and the reduction of carbon emissions of our customers, in line with our Climate ambition to get to Net Zero by 2050, together with society.”
When used as a marine fuel, LNG drastically reduces ship pollution, resulting in dramatic improvements in air quality, particularly in coastal and port cities. As a result, this deal helps not only Marseille, the city where LNG bunkering will take place, but also all of the ports where cruise ships will call in the future across the Mediterranean Sea.
MSC Cruises’ LNG powered vessels will be amongst the most technologically advanced cruise ships in the world, bringing a range of environmental innovations to the market. Chief amongst these is a 50-kilowatt, LNG-powered solid oxide fuel cell technology project that offers a potential to further reduce significantly greenhouse gas emissions compared to a conventional LNG engine.
Total will bunker MSC Cruises’ LNG-powered cruise ships sailing on Mediterranean routes by ship-to-ship transfer, using its second LNG bunker vessel currently under construction. This vessel will meet the highest technical and environmental standards, using LNG herself as propulsion fuel and integrating a complete re-liquefaction of the boil-off gas.
By 2022, Total will operate two 18,600-m³ LNG bunkering vessels in Rotterdam and Marseille and share the use of a third bunker vessel in Singapore. In February 2021, the Company also received a license from the Maritime & Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) to supply LNG in the Port of Singapore from 2022.
LNG as a marine fuel
LNG as a marine fuel has gained positive momentum as the global shipping industry looks to adapt to stricter emissions standards.
Used as a marine fuel, LNG helps to cut:
- Sulfur emissions by 99%,
- Fine particle emissions by 99%,
- Nitrogen oxide emissions by up to 85%,
- Greenhouse gases emissions by around 20%.
LNG represents an available and competitive solution that contributes to the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) long-term strategy of reducing greenhouse gas emissions from ships. Traction in developing LNG bunkering infrastructure has consequently expanded with several leading ports and LNG bunker suppliers alike having established key initiatives and made significant progress in support of these developments. LNG as a marine fuel also lays the foundation for the introduction of greener bioLNG in the future.