Dutch Gate terminal, with main shareholders Gasunie and Vopak, informed that it will start the construction activities for the new LNG break bulk infrastructure at its site at the Maasvlakte in Rotterdam.
The Port of Rotterdam has begun with the excavation of a new harbour basin next to Gate terminal. The new facility is expected to boost the use of liquefied natural gas as a cleaner and affordable transportation fuel in the Netherlands and Northwest Europe, stands in Gate’s statement.
Break bulk services aim to split up large-scale LNG shipments into smaller parcels. This enables the distribution and use of LNG as a cleaner fuel alternative for maritime vessels, ferries, trucks and industrial applications.
To mark the start of the development of LNG break bulk infrastructure and services Gate terminal will hold a groundbreaking ceremony.
The new infrastructure will be located next to Gate terminal. The Port of Rotterdam Authority will build a new harbour basin and quay wall, which is planned to be delivered end of 2015. Gate will construct the LNG installations, including berthing and loading facilities dedicated to bunkerships and smaller tankers enabling LNG bunker operations in the port of Rotterdam and further distribution of LNG in Northwest Europe. The new facilities are based on a multi-user service model, open to all interested parties, and will have a maximum capacity of 280 berthing slots per year. The finalization of the construction, commissioning and first loading operations are planned towards the end of H1 2016.
Shell, as launching customer, has committed to buying capacity from Gate terminal, which has enabled this investment in the terminal expansion. Shell has recently ordered a specialised LNG bunker vessel, to supply LNG-fuelled vessels in Northwest Europe. The new vessel will be based at the port of Rotterdam in the Netherlands, and will load from the new LNG break bulk infrastructure.
The project is key to facilitating LNG distribution and to secure LNG supply in Northwest European ports, such as Gothenburg. The maritime connection between Rotterdam and this area is regarded as a part of the EU ‘motorways of the sea’ concept and has therefore been selected for co-financing under the European Union’s TEN-T programme.