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LNG For Fuel

Shell opens new LNG truck refueling station in Amsterdam

This week Shell announced the opening of its third Liquefied Natural Gas truck refueling station in the Netherlands. The station in Amsterdam is located in the western port area, a location with significant turnover from ships to trucks that distribute goods into the city according to Shell. This follows opening of Shell’s first two stations in the country in March and April 2015 in Rotterdam and Waalwijk.

Shell noted heavy-duty truck fleet owners are increasingly choosing LNG fuel over traditional diesel because it can be cost-competitive for trucks that cover long distances. It is cleaner than diesel in terms of sulphur, particulates and nitrogen oxides, and can help reduce well-to-wheel greenhouse gas emissions if well managed.

This new station has a capacity of 70,000 liters of LNG, enough to fuel around 200 trucks per day. Customers can use the euroShell card, which offers a secure and efficient way to buy fuels and access a range of services, providing convenience in day to day operations.

“I am excited by the progress we have made, in a short time, developing a LNG refueling network in the Netherlands with the opening of this new station,” said Giorgio Delpiano, General-Manager for Shell’s euroShell business. “We believe LNG is a viable fuel option for heavy-duty truck fleet owners, today.”

Lauran Wetemans, General Manager Downstream LNG, added, “We expect LNG will form a bigger part of the sustainable transport fuel mix in the future. Shell continues to work together with engine manufacturers, customers and policy makers to strengthen the business case for the use of LNG fuel in transport. As customer demand grows, we plan to open additional LNG sites in the Netherlands.”

From 1st of October 2015, Shell will have access to import and storage capacity in the Gas Access to Europe Terminal (Gate), enabling the company to supply its own LNG to marine and road customers in northwest Europe. Shell pointed out it will supply the LNG fuel for its truck refueling network in the Netherlands from here. This position supports Shell’s commitment as the launching customer of the new, dedicated ‘break bulk’ LNG terminal being built at the port of Rotterdam by Gate according to Shell.

 shell lng netherlands



LNG-Capable Tanker Delivered to Crowley

Crowley Maritime Corp. announced today that the company took delivery of Ohio, the first of four new, Jones Act, product tankers this week from Aker Philadelphia Shipyard, Inc. (APSI), the wholly-owned U.S. subsidiary of Aker Philadelphia Shipyard ASA. Crowley Maritime noted the delivery is momentous not only for Crowley, but also for the industry because it signifies the first time a product tanker has been constructed with consideration for the future use of LNG for propulsion. The remaining three product tankers being built by APSI for Crowley are currently under construction and have planned deliveries through 2016 according to Crowley Maritime.

“We are excited to offer our customers cutting-edge technology available in these new tankers, which not only embraces operational excellence and top safety, but also offers the potential to be powered by environmentally friendly LNG in the future,” said Crowley’s Rob Grune, senior vice president and general manager, petroleum and chemical transportation. “Adding these new Jones Act tankers to our fleet allows us to continue providing our customers with diverse and modern equipment to transport their petroleum and chemical products in a safe and reliable manner.”

The new 50,000 dwt product tankers are based on a proven Hyundai Mipo Dockyards (HMD) design which incorporates numerous fuel efficiency features, flexible cargo capability, and the latest regulatory requirements. The vessel is 600 feet long and is capable of carrying crude oil or refined petroleum products.

“We are proud to have Crowley as a repeat customer at the shipyard and to deliver another quality tanker to them. This vessel continues our strong history of building ships here in Philadelphia,” said Steinar Nerbovik, president and CEO, APSI.

Crowley’s Seattle-based, naval architecture and marine engineering subsidiary Jensen Maritime is providing construction management services for the product tankers. Jensen now has an on-site office and personnel at the Philadelphia shipyard to ensure strong working relationships with shipyard staff and a seamless construction and delivery program.

crowley lng tank 10 2015

Image: Crowley Maritime 

Thigpen Energy Spins-Off From TRF Energy Solutions

Thigpen Energy today announced the re-launch of the Thigpen Energy brand.  Effective October, 1, 2015, Thigpen Energy will be spun out of TRF Energy Solutions and will become a stand-alone portfolio investment for Intervale Capital. 

In March 2015, Thigpen Energy's management team decided to change its market focus to industrial and pipeline integrity projects requiring large scale portable fueling solutions, and reallocate resources away from the E&P fueling market. According to a Thigpen Energy statement the strategic realignment proved to be timely as the fueling services business at Thigpen grew tenfold in just six months.  The Board of Directors agreed to spin Thigpen Energy out of the TRF Energy Solutions holding company as a stand-alone portfolio investment.  This move will provide more robust capital support for the steady growth of the business according to a Thigpen Energy statement.

Thigpen Energy also announced that Sam Thigpen, Founder and CEO of Thigpen Energy, will transition from his operational role and join the company's Board of Directors. Jim Schauer, previously Senior Vice President Marketing & Sales, will assume the role of President and CEO effective October 1, 2015. 

According to the company statement Sam Thigpen will also be engaging in a new opportunity with Chart Industries, Inc. Energy and Chemicals business unit.  Thigpen has accepted a role as Vice President and General Manager of Lifecycle Products and Services at Chart E&C business.     

BC Ferries Sea Trials for LNG Conversion Projects

BC Ferries’ Spirit of Vancouver Island and the Spirit of British Columbia will be conducting sea trials in the Saanich Inlet from September 21 – 24 in order to demonstrate the performance of the vessels for the three shipyards bidding on the mid-life upgrades including conversion to dual-fuel so the ships can operate on liquefied natural gas.

According to BC Ferries each vessel will undergo two days of sea trials to demonstrate the operational profiles of the ships including vessel maneuverability, acceleration and speed. These trials will provide the shipyards with data on control system parameters as well as peak power loads in variable weather, tide or current conditions experienced when transiting Active Pass.

“This is an important step in the bidding process for the shipyards so they can measure and verify vessel performance to provide the optimal propulsive machinery arrangements they submit as part of their bids,” said Mark Wilson, BC Ferries’ Vice President of Engineering.

The three shipyards bidding on the project are Seaspan’s Vancouver Shipyards, Remontowa SA of Poland and Fincantieri of Italy. Over the next three months, BC Ferries will continue to negotiate with the three proponents to select the final bidder. BC Ferries expects to award a contract for the Spirit Class mid-life upgrades and conversions to the successful bidder in early 2016.

BC Ferries is planning for the Spirit of British Columbia to be the first ship through the MLU and LNG conversion process and commence actual conversion from the fall of 2017 through the spring of 2018, and the Spirit of Vancouver Island’s to follow the following year from the fall of 2018 through the spring of 2019.

Crowley's First LNG Powered Ship 25% Complete

The construction of the first of two liquefied natural gas powered, combination container – Roll-On/Roll-Off (ConRo) ships for Crowley Maritime Corporation’s liner services group has reached the construction milestone of 25 percent complete.

The two ships, which will be named El Coquí (ko-kee) and Taíno (tahy-noh), are currently under construction at VT Halter Marine, Inc., a subsidiary of VT Systems, Inc., a project that began in November 2013. The ceremonial first steel plate cutting was celebrated with a ceremony held at VT Halter the following year, in October 2014.

“Week by week, we have watched the pair of Commitment Class ships begin to take shape,” said John Hourihan, senior vice president and general manager, Puerto Rico/Caribbean liner services. “It’s been incredible to watch. Once fully constructed, these new vessels will embody superior technology and construction and, while we are anxious to get them into service for our partners in Puerto Rico, we are thrilled that they are coming together on schedule.”

The main propulsion and auxiliary engines will be fueled by LNG. The ship design is provided by Wartsila Ship Design in conjunction with Crowley subsidiary Jensen Maritime, a Seattle-based naval architecture and marine engineering firm. 

IPC USA Launches LNG Rack Price Program in Texas

IPC announced today the launch of Monthly LNG Rack Pricing in the state of Texas. The Monthly LNG Rack Pricing offering will be shared similar to the way IPC offers Diesel Rack Pricing to its current diesel fuel buyers.  This will provide the ability for organizations to make informed decisions on LNG fuel purchases based on the most up-to-the-minute pricing according to IPC.  IPC noted it will be assisting the customer with the Diesel Gallon Equivalent (DGE) price per gallon as the DGE will be listed alongside the LNG price.  IPC pointed out it wants to develop a database where instant notifications are available to all customers and prospects when LNG prices change based on market conditions.

For September 2015 IPC listed the LNG Rack Price (George West, TX) at $0.667 per LNG gallon / $1.12 per DGE.

"We hope this type of crucial data point will help customers understand the savings that exist between LNG and other refined fuels.  The voice of the customer has been loud and clear desiring a sense of transparency on the pricing of LNG”, said Randy Jones, Senior Vice President at IPC.   IPC is providing cost-effective LNG for the Texas market for both On-road and High Horsepower applications.  IPC is focused on asphalt, oil and gas exploration, mining, agriculture and other off-road applications to reduce fuel costs and comply with environmental regulations.  IPC is providing LNG fuel and fuel system solutions through a coordinated approach with value chain partners to implement a simple LNG fuel solution.

Jensen Develops Two New LNG Bunker Barge Concepts

Crowley Maritime Corp. a subsidiary Jensen Maritime announced yesterday the development of two new, LNG bunker barge concepts.

The first concept involves outfitting an existing barge with an above-deck LNG tank. The concept can be further modified to accommodate more than one type of product, if a customer has a need for multiple liquid transfers. According to Crowley advantages of this design include a fast turnaround and a reduced need to invest in specialized assets if a customer has short-term LNG requirements.

The second concept is for a purpose-built, new bunker barge. Offering greater carrying capacity and improved visibility, the design features a larger LNG tank that is nestled inside of the barge. This new barge will also feature the latest safety features and efficiencies.

“We understand that customers have very different needs when it comes to LNG,” said Johan Sperling, vice president. “Whether LNG is required for the long or short term, or in larger or smaller quantities, Jensen has a bunkering solution. We are proud to continue leading the way with LNG marine solutions.”

Crowley noted bunker barges offer an innovative solution for the maritime industry, which is currently struggling with the decision over which to develop first – LNG infrastructure or vessels. These barges are an ideal resource for those who have LNG needs at ports not located near an LNG terminal or as an alternative to over-the-road transportation.

crowley 2015 bunker

Clean Energy Fuels Q2 2015 LNG delivered decreases compared to Q2 2014

Clean Energy Fuels Corp. yesterday announced operating results for the second quarter ended June 30, 2015.

Total gallons of LNG delivered for the second quarter of 2015 decreased 3.83 % to 17.6 million gallons, compared to 18.3 million gallons delivered in the same period a year ago.

Total gallons of LNG delivered for the six months ended June 30, 2015 increased 2.51 % to 35.9 million gallons, compared to 35.0 million gallons delivered in the same period a year ago.

Total gallons delivered for the second quarter of 2015 increased 15% to 74.4 million gallons, compared to 64.8 million gallons delivered in the same period a year ago. Gallons delivered for the six months ended June 30, 2015 increased 21% to 149.6 million gallons, compared to 124.1 million gallons delivered in the same period a year ago.

Clean Energy Fuels defines “gallons delivered” as its gallons of compressed natural gas (CNG), liquefied natural gas (LNG) and renewable natural gas (RNG), along with its gallons associated with providing operations and maintenance services, delivered to its customers during the applicable period.

The table below shows gallons delivered for the three and six months ended June 30, 2014 and 2015:

    Three Months Ended June 30,   Six Months Ended June 30,
Gallons Delivered (in millions)   2014   2015   2014   2015
CNG   43.5   54.9   82.9   107.3
LNG   18.3   17.6   35.0   35.9
RNG   3.0   1.9   6.2   6.4
Total   64.8   74.4   124.1   149.6

Totem Ocean to partner with Keppel for conversion of the Midnight Sun to LNG

Totem Ocean Trailer Express announced yesterday that it has signed a contract with Keppel Shipyard Ltd for the conversion of the Midnight Sun to dual fuel liquefied natural gas propulsion. The work will begin in December and is expected to be completed in 90 days according to Totem Ocean.

Totem Ocean  noted once complete, the Midnight Sun will emit fewer air and greenhouse gas emissions, reducing emissions of particulate matter by 91 percent, NOx by 100 percent, SOx by 90 percent and carbon dioxide by 35 percent.   Her sister ship, the North Star, is expected to be converted in the 2016/2017 time frame.

“Totem Ocean is excited to partner with Keppel for the conversion of the Midnight Sun, enabling her to operate on natural gas” stated John Parrott, President of Totem Ocean. “The removal and replacement of the four engines, adding 2,200 cubic meters of LNG capacity along with the addition of 47 kilometers of new cabling is a complex undertaking, and we are confident that Keppel will provide safe, timely, high-quality work to ensure the best outcome for Totem Ocean and our customers.”

Mr Michael Chia, Managing Director (Marine & Technology), Keppel Offshore & Marine, said, “We are happy to start a new partnership with Totem Ocean who has entrusted us with the conversion of their first RO/RO vessel to run on both diesel and natural gas. Due to natural gas’ cleaner burning properties, more and more vessel owners are choosing to have their ships powered by LNG. Leveraging our strong track record and experience in ship modification and conversion work, Keppel is well positioned to capture this growing market to meet the industry’s needs for environmentally friendly solutions.”

Puget Sound Energy, in partnership with Totem Ocean and the Port of Tacoma, has plans to construct an LNG liquefaction terminal at the Port that will serve Totem Ocean, residents of Puget Sound and the broader transportation industry in the Pacific Northwest. This facility is scheduled to be complete by the end of 2018.

Santa Monica’s Big Blue Bus converts to renewable natural gas

The City of Santa Monica’s Big Blue Bus announced today that it has become one of the country’s first municipal transit authorities to convert its fleet to renewable natural gas. Earlier this year Big Blue Bus modified its agreement with Clean Energy Fuels to transition the supply of LNG for its fleet to Clean Energy’s Redeem™ renewable LNG.   

Redeem™ is harvested from landfills. The gas has historically been burned off into the atmosphere. The gas is now harvested through a series of membranes implanted in the ground of landfills. With the announcement, Big Blue Bus also unveiled a new Bus ad campaign called “Bigger, Bluer, Skies” to emphasize the lower emissions and sustainability of this type of fuel.

Big Blue Bus has been fueling its LNG and CNG fleet of motor coaches with fuel supplied by Clean Energy since 2012. “City Council has voiced its support for non-fracked, sustainable sources of fuel, and Redeem™ delivers a fuel made entirely of waste; a more sustainable product at an equal cost. This makes Big Blue Bus’s partnership with Clean Energy to use the Redeem™ fuel a win-win solution,” said Big Blue Bus’s Transit Director, Ed King.

santa monica bus lng

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