Singapore-based bunkering services provider TotalEnergies Marine Fuels and Japanese shipping company Mitsui O.S.K. Line (MOL) have completed the first biofuel bunker operation for a vehicle carrier in Singapore.

The local operation was made possible with support from the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA).

The MOL-operated car and truck carrier, Heroic Ace, was refueled with TotalEnergies-supplied biofuel on 11 June 2022 via ship-to-ship transfer, while the carrier performed cargo operations simultaneously.

The biofuel has been consumed during the carrier’s voyage to Jebel Ali, the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The biofuel blend used in this trial composed of very low sulfur fuel oil (VLSFO) blended with 20% second-generation, waste-based and ISCC-certified used cooking oil methyl ester (UCOME). From a well-to-wake assessment, the biofuel will reduce approximately 17% of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions compared with conventional fuel oil.

MOL’s initial analysis of the vehicle carrier’s engine and machinery performance has demonstrated high compatibility and safe use of the biofuel onboard the vessel, the two companies said in a joint statement.

“We are delighted to work with frontrunners in green shipping, such as MOL, on the use of sustainable biofuels to reduce their vessels’ carbon footprint. For TotalEnergies Marine Fuels, we want to develop a sustainable, cost-efficient and low-carbon biofuel solutions for customers across different shipping segments,” Laura Ong, General Manager of Trading and Operations for Asia Pacific, TotalEnergies Marine Fuels, based in Singapore, commented.

“MOL Car Carrier division has been working on trial usage of biofuel during navigation in the European short haul trade for more than a year. Today we are very pleased to announce that we have expanded our actions to the long haul trades,” Koichi Hirata, General Manager, Car Carrier Division of MOL, said.

TotalEnergies and MOL believe biofuels provide an immediate and sustainable solution to decarbonize shipping today, as they can be blended or dropped into existing conventional fuels with little or no technological developments required on vessels.

As part of TotalEnergies’ strategy to produce a new generation of biofuels for use in transport, TotalEnergies is investing in biofuels projects based on animal fat or used oils, thereby sourcing from the circular economy and limiting the competition for and impact on arable land. These initiatives reinforce TotalEnergies’ climate ambition to reach net-zero emissions by 2050 together with society.

In parallel, TotalEnergies Marine Fuels is committed to driving the decarbonization of shipping through the provision of clean and low-carbon marine fuel solutions across the short and long-term.

Biofuel is positioned as an effective alternative to fossil fuels in ‘MOL Group Environmental Vision 2.1’, which includes the achievement of net zero emissions by 2050. MOL Group continually takes a proactive stance in promoting adoption of clean alternative fuels with the aim of reducing greenhouse gas emissions in ocean transport.

The two companies plan to continue to build on their collaborations to explore new joint initiatives that promote the introduction of clean, low-carbon alternative fuels. Both companies have co-developed bunker vessels, the Gas Agility and the Gas Vitality, for the supply of marine liquefied natural gas (LNG) in the Northwestern Europe and Mediterranean regions.

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