Press Release

Life Cycle GHG Emission Study on the Use of LNG as Marine Fuel

April 11, 2019

Landmark Well-to-Wake study conducted by thinkstep provides definitive figures for GHG emissions and shows LNG as major contributor in meeting IMO’s 2050 GHG targets for shipping.

LONDON, 11th April 2019: The study report launched today has revealed that Greenhouse Gas (GHG) reductions of up to 21% are achievable now from LNG as a marine fuel, compared with current oil-based marine fuels over the entire life-cycle from Well-to-Wake (WtW). It also shows that emissions of other local pollutants, such as sulphur oxides (SOx), nitrogen oxides (NOx) and particulate matter (PM), are significantly reduced when using LNG compared with current conventional oil-based marine fuels.

The study, commissioned by SEA\LNG and SGMF, was conducted by thinkstep according to ISO 14040/44 standards. The report, which has been critically reviewed by a panel of independent academic experts, is the definitive study into GHG emissions from current marine engines.

On an engine technology basis, the absolute WtW emissions reduction benefits for LNG-fuelled engines compared with HFO fuelled ships today are between 14% to 21% for 2-stroke slow speed engines and between 7% to 15% for 4-stroke medium speed engines. 72% of the marine fuel consumed today is by 2-stroke engines with a further 18% used by 4-stroke medium speed engines.

The study further outlines that ongoing optimisation in supply chain and engine technology developments will further enhance the benefits of LNG as a marine fuel. Additionally, bioLNG and Synthetic LNG - both fully interchangeable with LNG derived from fossil feedstock - offer the potential for significant additional GHG emissions reductions.

Dr. Oliver Schuller, Team Lead Energy & Mobility at thinkstep stated: “The main goal of this study was to provide an accurate report of the life-cycle GHG emissions from LNG as a marine fuel compared with conventional marine fuels.”

The comprehensive report uses the latest primary data to assess all major types of marine engines and global sources of supply with quality data provided by Original Equipment Manufacturers including Caterpillar MaK, Caterpillar Solar Turbines, GE, MAN Energy Solutions, Rolls Royce (MTU), Wärtsilä, and Winterthur Gas & Diesel, as well as from ExxonMobil, Shell, and Total from the supply side. It is quality assured in assessing the supply and use of LNG as a marine fuel according to ISO standards, and objective having been peer-reviewed by thinkstep consultants as well as other leading academics from key institutions in France, Germany, Japan and the USA.

The full Well-to-Wake GHG Emissions Lifecycle Study can be accessed here:

GHG Emissions Lifecycle Study

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