As demand for liquefied natural gas (LNG)-fuelled vessels has increased, so has the demand for practical, cost-effective and efficient LNG bunkering, leading to an urgent need to standardize these operations at the international level.
Some ships in northern Europe have been using LNG as their fuel source for over a decade, with an extremely good safety record. However, as the use of such ships spreads to other parts of the world, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) informed that the introduction of a new ISO standard would ensure LNG-fuelled vessels can bunker in a safe and sustainable way.
The new ISO 20519, Ships and marine technology – Specification for bunkering of liquefied natural gas fuelled vessels, “will help operators select vessel fuel providers that meet defined safety and fuel quality standards,” ISO said.
ISO 20519 contains requirements that are not covered by the International Code for the Construction and Equipment of Ships Carrying Liquefied Gases in Bulk (IGC Code), the prevailing international code for the safe carriage by sea of liquefied gases in bulk.
In recent years, the ships and vessels fuelled with LNG have become larger, transit greater distances and may bunker in a greater number of ports in different countries. As a result, the number of parties involved in LNG bunkering is growing rapidly.
“Standardizing safety practices had become necessary to ensure that, no matter where the bunkering took place, there would be a common set of requirements that were understood across the board – from LNG provider to ship personnel,” according to ISO.