Scandinavian liquefied natural gas (LNG) provider Skangas has entered into an agreement with dry bulk shipping company ESL Shipping, part of the Aspo Group, to provide gas fuel to ESL’s LNG-powered newbuildings.
As part of the agreement, Skangas will also provide ESL Shipping with liquefied biogas (LBG). LBG and LNG are interchangeable as fuel and thus the same LNG supply chain is used.
As informed, the two new vessels will start operating during first half of 2018.
The first of the two vessels was named Viikki in June 2017. The 26,000 dwt bulker measures 160 meters in length and 26 meters in beam.
“This agreement is a milestone for Skangas. Ms Viikki will be the first vessel that we will serve from the new LNG terminal in Tornio. There will be more to come,” Kimmo Rahkamo, CEO of Skangas, explained.
“This is a large step towards even greener shipping. Our combination of latest hull design and numerous other energy saving measures together with usage of LNG as fuel will reduce the carbon dioxide emissions per ton of cargo transported by more than 50 percent in comparison to present generation of vessels. This agreement also helps us to lower our operational costs,” Mikki Koskinen, Managing Director of ESL Shipping, commented.
The new, ice-class 1A ships will be the first LNG-fueled large bulkers in the world and will carry out sea transports within the Baltic Sea and the North Sea, according to the two companies.
This newbuilding project is part of the Bothnia Bulk project, co-funded partly by the EU. Its objective is to modernize the sea route between Luleå, Oxelösund and Raahe to be eco-friendlier.