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Euronav completes biofuel trial on Suezmax Statia tanker

Belgium-headed Euronav NV the world's largest independent tanker company has announced that it has successfully tested a B30 biofuel on a Suezmax vessel, the 150 205 DWT "Statia". The Suezmax Statia tested approximately 360 tonnes of the B30 biofuel blend supplied by bp during a two-week trial in September while the vessel was in commercial operations on its way to Angola from the Netherlands.

Euronav’s Suezmax Statia has tested around 360 tonnes of a B30 biofuel blend supplied by bp during a two-week trial in September 2021 while the vessel was on its way to Angola from the Netherlands (photo courtesy Euronav).

Euronav is committed to accelerating the transition to lower carbon alternatives by testing the operational readiness and emission reduction potential of biofuels in the context of strategic partnerships.

Euronav bunkered 1 502 tonnes of a B30 biodiesel blend manufactured by bp on the Suezmax Statia. It was bunkered in the Port of Rotterdam, the Netherlands where there is a government incentive – Incentive Scheme for Climate-Friendly Shipping – in place that enables the cost-effective blending of biofuels into marine fuels.

The biofuel is composed of 30 percent advanced carbon-neutral biofuel blended with 70 percent conventional very low sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO) bunker fuel.

Consumption of this fuel results in a decrease in lifecycle carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. The Suezmax Statia tested approximately 360 tonnes of the B30 biofuel blend during a two-week trial in September while the vessel was in commercial operations on its way to Angola.

The trial of the blend was successful and showed no significant differences in operations or any malfunctions that could lead to a breakdown.

As a result, and after departure from Chile, the remaining B30 biofuel blend on the vessel is now the only fuel in operational use, both for the main engine and the auxiliary engines, on its way to Brazil.

It is important for us to understand how to handle biofuels on our vessels, to test their longevity and stability, and how they behave when used in engines, generators and alike. The migration into using biofuels is a critical step on the road to reducing emissions, as the use of biofuel will reduce our overall impact on the environment with little additional investment. The use of biofuel blends will be a critical bridge to decarbonization until the development and commercial availability of zero-emissions fuels. As we continue this journey toward decarbonization, we will keep on adjusting our operations and our fuel procurement strategies as needed, said Rustin Edwards, Head of Fuel Oil at Euronav.

Sustainable maritime fuels and zero-emission technologies are the key drivers to support the industry’s transition to zero-emission shipping. The decarbonization voyage that Euronav, and the broader maritime industry, have embarked on will bring the industry into alignment with the Paris Agreement.

Euronav looks to invest in initiatives on a variety of areas and platforms. Going forward, these will help shape the industry and will support the achievement of these achievable goals.

As one of the key contributors to the establishment of the Poseidon Principles and the Sea Cargo Charter, and as a signatory of the’ Call to Action for Shipping Decarbonization’ statement from the Global Maritime Forum, Euronav places a particular emphasis on building ambitious yet seamless decarbonization trajectories. We are and will continue to be committed to embracing innovative fuel technologies towards achieving our ambition of zero-emission shipping operations. Our strategic partnerships play a pivotal role in taking up such impactful market opportunities, said Konstantinos Papoutsis, Sustainability Manager at Euronav.

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