Prometheus Energy Group Inc. today announced the expansion of its LNG Supply and Services Agreement with Apache Corporation. Prometheus noted the collaboration has resulted in a direct supplier-to-operator fuel platform to provide Apache with the ability to utilize LNG, a cleaner burning alternative gas over other fossil fuels, powering multiple drilling rigs and frac spreads.
According to Prometheus under the expanded Agreement, Prometheus will provide Apache with additional LNG solutions for its new dual fuel and dedicated gas drilling rigs, as well as hydraulic fracturing pumping engines utilized by Apache's oilfield service providers. For over a year, Prometheus Energy has facilitated Apache's strategic focus on delivering reduced emissions, as well as lower costs, in its exploration and production activities.
Prometheus stated other key benefits under the Agreement which include:
Prometheus Energy's single solution to manage LNG supply, logistics, and delivery
Onsite LNG equipment for storage and regasification
Technical field services for Apache drilling and completion operations – Midcontinent region
Builds on an existing relationship as both companies discuss expansion to other operating units
"We are evaluating all options for use of natural gas in all of our field applications, including field gas, CNG and LNG," states Mike Bahorich, Apache's Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer. "When you consider the total cost of ownership and the additional project and operational advantages, the evaluation looks very promising for all three fuel applications. Prometheus has done an excellent job for Apache thus far with LNG."
Asda Logistics Services has introduced 50 dual-fuel Volvo FM tractor units at its newly opened distribution center in Avonmouth, Bristol U.K.
The Asda trucks will run on LNG and diesel. Working in partnership with BOC, Asda has invested in a dedicated LNG refueling station at the Avonmouth site. The site is designed to minimize environmental impact and costs by the use of ‘zero loss’ refueling technology. The new dual-fuel vehicles are the latest development in Asda Logistics Service’s transport sustainability strategy following the ‘fewer, cheaper miles’ policy to complement the ‘greenest’ depot in the Asda estate.
Chris Hall, Head of Central Transport for ALS said, “Asda’s investment in the new distribution center at Avonmouth and the roll-out of the 50 dual-fuel Volvos, is part of a planned program of initiatives to deliver growth and sustainability by maintaining a 10% absolute carbon footprint reduction by 2015. Alternative fuels are an important part of our green agenda. When we take our longer trailer trials into account together with the Volvo dual-fuel trucks, we will be able to increase the volume of goods trunked while at the same time reducing vehicle miles and cutting emissions by 15% over 5 years.”
Asda Logistics Services strengthens its commitment to reducing carbon emissions with the introduction of 50 dual-fuel Volvo FM tractor units at its newly opened distribution centre at Asda Avonmouth, Bristol.
Wärtsilä announced they have been awarded the contract to supply the extended engineering scope for the initial, basic, and production designs for a series of two Container RoRo vessels to be built for US based owner, Crowley Maritime Corporation. The vessels will be powered by liquefied natural gas and are to be built at the VT Halter Marine's shipyard in Pascagoula, Mississippi. The contract was signed in the third quarter of 2013.
Wärtsilä noted their design enables the capability to carry conventional 20 ft, and 40 ft containers, as well as the special 45 ft and 53 ft wide body high cube container developed for the American market. The RoRo capacity is in excess of 350 private cars. When built, these will be among the very first LNG powered, American flagged, container RoRo ships. They will operate between Jacksonville, Florida and San Juan, Puerto Rico on a weekly rotational basis.
"Wärtsilä Ship Design has extensive experience in designing innovative and efficient vessels. This experience, combined with Wärtsilä's vast know-how and leading global position in LNG propulsion solutions for the marine industry, has given us a strong competitive edge. This is reflected by this latest order. We have enjoyed a long co-operation with both Crowley Maritime Corporation and VT Halter Marine," says Riku-Pekka Hägg, Vice President, Wärtsilä Ship Design.
Above: Wärtsilä will supply the extended engineering scope for the initial, basic, and production designs for a series of two Container RoRo vessels to be built for Crowley Maritime Corporation.
The largest ferry system in the United States has been researching converting some of its fleet from diesel to LNG. After three and a half years of analysis, evaluation and several detailed studies Washington State Ferries (WSF) will seek the U.S. Coast Guard’s approval to use LNG as propulsion fuel. WSF burns nearly 18 million gallons of fuel each year. Fuel is WSF’s fastest growing operating expense.
WSF proposed conversion of its six Issaquah Class vessels would entail retrofitting LNG fuel tanks on the top decks of the vessels. These vessels would be supplied by deliveries from LNG over-the-road tank trucks. The refueling operations would occur at the following WSF ferry terminals: Southworth, Bremerton, Kingston, Clinton and Anacortes.
In May of 2012, WSF issued a Request for Proposal (RFP) to solicit interest from consultants to assist WSF in development of a Waterways Suitability Assessment (WSA) and operational planning. Det Norske Veritas (DNV), headquartered in Norway, was selected.
One of the WSA conclusions was in regard to LNG tank placement. The WSA found that the placement of the LNG tanks on the top deck of the ferries is an inherently safe design to prevent damage to the LNG tanks in a collision. Because the LNG tanks would be placed 12 m (39 ft.) above the waterline it would take a collision at the precise location, that penetrates the ferry side at least 5 m (16 ft.) deep at a height of 12 m (39 ft.) above the waterline to breach the tanks. Given these three factors DNV concluded that on the route with the highest risk, the probability of such a collision would be a 1 in 500 year event, and for the other routes the risk would be even lower.
WSF will now submit a formal Letter of Intent (LOI) to the U.S. Coast Guard. The submission of the LOI will include the WSA and the LNG Operations Manual for the U.S. Coast Guard’s review. The submission of the LOI and WSA marks the official starting point of the U.S. Coast Guard’s review process.
In the best case scenario, from the time legislative funding is approved to the actual conversion of the first Issaquah Class vessel would be 2016. The conversions will be phased to coincide with the vessel’s scheduled dry-dock examinations.
Above: Renderings of LNG tanks on an Issaquah class ferry.
Today Ferus Natural Gas Fuels and ENN Canada Corporation announced a joint venture to construct, own and operate two LNG liquefaction plants in Canada. The plants will be located in Vancouver, British Columbia and Edmonton, Alberta to service trucking market as well as other high-horsepower applications including marine, rail, mining, and oil and gas exploration.
According to a joint statement, both facilities will initially be built to produce 100,000 US gallons per day of LNG, with the ability to expand as demand grows. Site selection will be determined within six months, and construction will be initiated immediately afterward. First product is expected early in 2016.
As Operator, Ferus Natural Gas Fuels will be responsible for the design, engineering, construction, operation, and marketing and sales of both facilities. ENN Canada has committed to a significant amount of the LNG produced at these plants for its planned fueling stations.
Ferus Natural Gas Fuels specializes in building and operating cryogenic and micro-LNG plants and distribution equipment, and ENN Canada, which is developing LNG refueling infrastructure across the country, brings expertise in the construction and operation of LNG/LCNG stations and provides assistance in acquiring and transitioning to natural gas vehicles.
"The benefits of fueling with natural gas are significant," said Henry Cai, CEO of ENN Canada. "Natural gas over diesel represents a 30-40% cost savings to the end-user and contributes up to a 25% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions."
"Lack of infrastructure is one of the major challenges associated with the development of the LNG fueling market," said Dick Brown, CEO of Ferus Natural Gas Fuels. "In order for our customers to make the switch to natural gas, they need certainty of an uninterrupted supply of LNG to fuel their equipment. These two LNG liquefaction plants, along with the specialized distribution equipment and planned retail fueling stations, will ensure that supply, which in turn will promote and facilitate the widespread usage of LNG in Western Canada."
CSX Corporation and GE Transportation today announced an agreement to explore emissions-cutting and efficiency breakthroughs in Liquefied Natural Gas technology for locomotives beginning with a pilot program in 2014.
GE has been testing low-pressure natural gas technology since spring of 2013, and is working closely with CSX and other Class 1 partners. Field tests are expected to begin in 2014. GE's NextFuel™ kits allow railroads to use natural gas as a fuel source, reducing emissions and potentially reducing fuel costs while not compromising performance. An Evolution Series locomotive equipped with the NextFuel Natural Gas Retrofit Kit meets US EPA Tier 3 emission standards noted CSX.
According to CSX natural gas-fueled locomotives can travel longer distances without refueling stops, as well as provide environmental and economic benefits. Adoption of natural gas-fueled locomotives will make freight rail an even more attractive transportation solution and furthers the industry's ability to absorb traffic from the nation's highways in an environmentally efficient way CSX noted in a statement.
"LNG technology has the potential to offer one of the most significant developments in railroading since the transition from steam to diesel in the 1950s," said Oscar Munoz, executive vice president and chief operating officer, CSX Corporation. "That change took many years to complete and began with a lot of unknowns, and this one is no different. But aggressively exploring this technology is consistent with CSX's focus on tomorrow, its longstanding commitment to efficient and environmentally friendly transportation, and its role in helping to promote U.S. energy independence. GE Transportation has the know-how to provide the right LNG solution for our locomotive fleet and help us better understand the feasibility of LNG technology from a safety, operations and economic perspective."
CSX will be working over the next few months to develop a test plan and secure regulatory concurrence. For CSX, GE Transportation will deploy its new NextFuel™ Natural Gas Retrofit Kits that enable existing Evolution Series locomotives to operate with dual fuel capabilities. CSX and GE will also work on the continued development of LNG technology for other classes of locomotives to promote gains across a larger portion of the CSX locomotive fleet, and will work closely with key stakeholders and agencies across government to ensure safety, realize environmental and other benefits, and advance LNG deployment.
"Locomotives are at an inflection point in balancing engine performance with efficiency and adherence to emissions standards," said Russell Stokes, chief executive officer, GE Transportation. "As we enter a new era of energy sources and what's possible for rail transport, we are excited to partner with CSX and lead the LNG transformation for the industry."
Clean Energy Fuels Corp. today announced a multi-year bulk fueling agreement to supply LNG to two private UPS stations located in Mesquite and Houston, Texas. Under a separate agreement with UPS, Clean Energy will open three of its America’s Natural Gas Highway stations located in Amarillo, Mesquite and San Antonio, Texas, to support UPS’ over-the-road fleet.
“UPS has staked a leadership role by transitioning their fleet to cleaner-burning natural gas,” said James Harger, chief marketing officer for Clean Energy. “Opening the Texas Triangle to LNG fueling is a significant milestone in the use of natural gas in goods movement and we look forward to supporting UPS’ natural gas fleet as it continues to expand across the nation.”
The fueling agreements will support UPS’ heavy-duty trucks, one of the largest LNG truck deployments in North America to-date.
Seabulk Tankers, Inc. announced today they have entered into a contract with General Dynamics NASSCO for the design and construction of one 50,000 deadweight ton LNG-conversion-ready product carrier with a 330,000 barrel cargo capacity, plus an option for one additional vessel. Delivery is expected in the fourth quarter of 2016.
This order brings the total of on order vessels for Seabulk Tankers, Inc. at NASSCO to three (3) with an option for a fourth vessel.
Kevin Graney, vice president and general manager of General Dynamics NASSCO, said, "NASSCO remains committed to bringing the most economical and environmentally sound technology to Jones Act owners and operators. We are pleased to extend our partnership with SEACOR through a third and potentially a fourth ECO tanker. This follow-on order is a clear indication that NASSCO is the shipyard of choice for Jones Act tankers."
Daniel Thorogood, president and COO of Seabulk Tankers, Inc., commented, "This additional order at NASSCO puts Seabulk firmly in position to serve our customers with some of the most modern, safe and fuel efficient Jones Act tankers available. With three tankers on order at NASSCO, Seabulk, as an integrated ship-owner and operator, will continue to offer safe and customer focused transportation solutions for many years to come."
Matson, Inc. announced yesterday that its subsidiary, Matson Navigation Company, Inc., signed a contract with Aker Philadelphia Shipyard Inc. to build two new 3,600 TEU containerships for an aggregate price of $418 million. The new vessels will be equipped with dual fuel engines that have LNG capability and are expected to be delivered in the third and fourth quarters of 2018.
The 850-foot long vessels will be the largest Jones Act containerships ever constructed and are designed to operate at speeds in excess of 23 knots, ensuring timely delivery of goods in Hawaii. Importantly, the ships will also be able to navigate safely into some of Hawaii's smaller ports.
According to Matson the new vessels will incorporate a number of "green ship technology" features such as a fuel efficient hull design, dual fuel engines, environmentally safe double hull fuel tanks and fresh water ballast systems.
"We are pleased to introduce the Aloha Class containership, built specifically to meet Hawaii's future freight demands with increased cargo capacity," said Matt Cox, president and CEO, Matson. "The new ships are designed to accommodate the diversified mix of cargo needed to support the state's economy and will boost our capacity for moving 45-foot containers and refrigerated cargo. The ships will also carry construction materials more effectively. Most importantly, this considerable investment underscores Matson's long-term commitment to providing Hawaii with a strong, reliable lifeline to and from the U.S. Mainland."
Above: Artist's rendition of Matson's Aloha Class 3,600 TEU containership. (PRNewsFoto/Matson, Inc.) Source: Matson, Inc.