By 2016, it should be possible for barges to fill up with LNG at a permanent bunkering station in the port of Antwerp, the port officials announced.
Truck-to-ship bunkering is already possible, but by setting up a bunkering station the port of Antwerp aims to make LNG permanently available.
In comparison with the diesel fuel currently used by European barges, LNG is much cleaner and environment-friendly. Barges powered by LNG emit hardly any particulates, and NOx emissions are drastically reduced.
Antwerp Port Authority has therefore issued a European call for tenders in order to find a partner to design and build a LNG bunkering station.
It must also be possible for trucks to fill up with LNG at the station. In the meantime the Port Authority is also allowing for the possibility that a private company may take the necessary initiatives to permit LNG bunkering at a permanent station.
LNG Master Plan for Rhine-Main-Danube
Construction of the bunkering station will partly be subsidised by the LNG Master Plan for the Rhine-Main-Danube, a project that forms part of the European Commission’s TEN-T programme.
The aim of this Master Plan is to promote the use of LNG as a fuel and its carriage as a cargo by European barges. In order to assure continuity and achieve the maximum impact in the Rhine corridor, Antwerp Port Authority is collaborating closely with its counterparts in Basel, Mannheim, Rotterdam and Strasbourg, for which a collaboration agreement was signed on 25 April 2014 at the Central Commission for Rhine Transport in Strasbourg.
The Antwerp Port Police Regulations were extended at the beginning of this year to cover LNG bunkering, thus providing a regulatory framework for truck-to-ship, ship-to-ship and terminal-to-ship bunkering with LNG in the port of Antwerp.
The bunker checklists permit LNG bunkering to be carried out in a safe and efficient way.
Press Release; July 18th, 2014