The Green Corridor joint industry project (JIP) was recently concluded with a signing ceremony in Singapore.
The project delivered an LNG-fuelled Newcastlemax design for transporting iron ore and coal on the Australia–China route during the Phase 1a, and upsized it to the very large ore carrier (VLOC) class in Phase 1b.
“The Green Corridor project brought together key stakeholders in the iron ore and coal trades, and the partners have made great progress in developing greener, more efficient, and future-proof designs. Innovations delivered will benefit not only ore and coal carriers but the entire bulk segment,” said Morten Løvstad, DNV GL’s business director for bulk carriers.
When the IMO confirmed the 2020 deadline for the 0.5 per cent global sulphur cap in 2016, key stakeholders serving the Australia–China iron ore and coal trade route, including major Australian miners BHP, Fortescue Metals Group and Rio Tinto, ship owners MOL and U-Ming, together with LNG supplier Woodside, ship designer SDARI, and class society DNV GL, decided to join forces to develop a suitable LNG-fuelled bulk carrier solution for the route.
China Merchant Energy Shipping and Shell Eastern Petroleum joined the project in a later phase.
The result was a robust, commercially viable and safe 210,000 dwt LNG-fuelled bulk carrier design. The Newcastlemax design from phase 1a was well received, and approval in principal (AiP) was issued by DNV GL in 2017.
In Phase 1b, the project concluded work on a dual-fuel 260,000 dwt dedicated ore carrier design based on the same economical and technical principles.
During the second phase the project promoted the development of optimized LNG bunkering supply chains to support efficient bunkering of bulkers along the trading route, in order to give the industry the confidence to invest in LNG-fuelled bulk carriers.
Woodside and Shell advised on LNG bunkering possibilities in Australia and the APAC region and the related supply chain costs.
Bunkering issues such as compatibility and safety studies for ship-to-ship bunkering have been addressed, and the economic calculation has been updated accordingly to demonstrate a more robust business case for LNG as fuel.
Due to the rapid rise in crude oil prices over the past year, the price of low-sulphur marine fuel is now 50 percent higher than when economics were analyzed for Phase 1a in early 2017.