LNG bunkering infrastructure expanding in the Baltic ports
March 14, 2017, marked the first meeting of the “Blue Baltics” project partners in Klaipėda. Klaipėdos nafta (KN), operator of the floating LNG terminal in Klaipėda, is the main coordinator of the project. The Baltic Ports Organization was also present, as a long standing supporter of LNG bunkering infrastructure development in the Baltic Sea region.
Topics discussed at the meeting included infrastructure synchronization of the Baltic Sea region liquefied natural gas (LNG), perspectives for future development and overall project progress. The gathering was joined by Brian Simpson, the European Coordinator for Motorways of the Sea (MoS), who introduced the political and financial support instruments available to the transport sector within the MoS framework.
Main objectives of the investments being part of the “Blue Baltics” project include the improvement of the effectiveness of the transport sector, integration of services and creation of a cost-effective LNG supply chain.
Promotion and support of LNG as fuel for shipping has a special meaning in the Baltic Sea region, with various environmental regulations implemented in the area. It ensures not only SECA compliance, but also the recently passed proposal to limit NOx emissions from ships in the Baltic Sea by introducing NOx Tier III requirements.
One of the BPO members, the Klaipėda State Seaport Authority is among the project’s partners. The initiative should enable a more effective use of the KN owned and operated Klaipėda’s LNG terminal capacity and create more favorable conditions for LNG shipping development.
Other project partners include the German Bernhard Schulte GmbH & Co., KG, which is implementing the LNG transport ship project, Estonian Alexela Energia AS, which is planning to develop the chain of LNG filling stations for public, commercial, sea transport and outermost consumers from the gas network, and the already mentioned Klaipėda State Seaport Authority, which is partly implementing the works of adaptation of the KN operated jetty to LNG loading.
“Blue Baltics” is a project aiming at the promotion of sustainable shipping by means of developing and establishing an LNG bunkering network in the Baltic Sea and corresponding European regions. Member States involved in the project include Lithuania, Sweden, Estonia and Germany.
One of the project’s main goals is the development of a “Maritime LNG Mobile Multifunctional Refilling Station – MMRS”, connecting the Floating Storage and Regasification Unit (FSRU) to the LNG Reloading Station in Klaipėda in order to enable LNG bunkering operations. An upgrade of the LNG Reloading Station is also planned. These actions will turn Klaipėda into the main LNG Hub within the Baltic region.
The project also includes plans to purchase 14 LNG containers, one mobile LNG/ CNG filling station and a LNG/ CNG pumping station supplying a range of customers in Estonia.
Estimated cost of the whole project is EUR 47,605,000.