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ExxonMobil to introduce low-emission marine biofuel

ExxonMobil The International Maritime Organisation (IMO) has introduced restrictions for marine fuels as part of its attempt to reduce carbon emissions from the shipping industry by 2050. Therefore, shipping companies will have to begin sourcing for alternative, less harmful sources of fuel for their vessels that meet the IMO’s requirements. A recent test conducted on the use of marine biofuel by oil and gas behemoth ExxonMobil has brought positive results, with an estimated 40% reduction in carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions compared to typical high-sulphur bunker fuel. The reduction in CO2 emissions will help shipping companies meet the criteria set forth by the IMO to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions. The trial, held in conjunction with Stena Bulk, was conducted when the ship was fully operational. The fuel was used for the ship’s engine as well as for machinery onboard the vessel. The marine biofuel will initially be introduced in Rotterdam later in the year, before wider distribution across the different ports covered by ExxonMobil. Commenting on the low-emission biofuel, Cowan Lee, global marine fuels marketing manager at ExxonMobil, said, “As operators face increasingly stringent regulations and significant pressure from customers to demonstrate their commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, this is an important next step in providing the lower-emissions fuels that operators want and need.” Echoing his sentiments, president and CEO of Stena Bulk, Erik Hanell, said, “We believe biofuels have an important role to play in accelerating the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in shipping. “The development of ExxonMobil’s biofuel is an important step towards a broader commercial use of low-carbon fuels and we were happy to be part of the sea trial, which proved to be very successful. The fuel performed very well and fitted seamlessly into our technical and commercial operation without the need for engine modifications or additional procedures, while contributing to a significant reduction of CO2 emissions,” he added. A further advantage of this biofuel is that it can immediately be used by vessels without the need to modify existing infrastructure, thus saving money for ship operators, as well as allowing them to instantly cut their emission levels. Source: Seatrade Maritime

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