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    Shell to Bunker BHP's LNG-Fuelled Bulk Carriers


BHP will use LNG-powered vessels to transport iron ore from Western Australia to China.

by: Shardul Sharma

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Shell to Bunker BHP's LNG-Fuelled Bulk Carriers

Anglo-Australian multinational BHP has awarded its first LNG supply contract to Shell for the bunkering of five LNG-fuelled Newcastlemax bulk carriers, which will transport iron ore between Western Australia and China from 2022, it said on December 1.

“The LNG bunkering contract marks a significant step in how BHP is working with our suppliers to reduce emissions across the maritime supply chain,” BHP chief operating officer Vandita Pant said. BHP will charter the vessels from Eastern Pacific Shipping (EPS) for five-year terms.

Pant added that LNG-fuelled vessels are forecast to help BHP reduce CO2 emissions by 30% on a per-voyage basis compared with conventional carriers going between Western Australia and China. They will also contribute towards its goal of reducing the emissions intensity of the chartered shipping of its products by 40%.

“This LNG bunkering contract strengthens the bunkering market in the region and we look forward to working with BHP and other customers in the maritime sector on their journey to a net-zero emissions future,” Steve Hill, executive vice president of Shell Energy, said.

LNG bunkering will be carried out by Singapore's first operational LNG bunker vessel, FueLNG Bellina. The vessel is operated by FueLNG, a joint venture between Shell Eastern Petroleum and Keppel Offshore & Marine. It will be able to bunker fuel at a rate of 100-1,000 m3/hour, BHP said.

“The LNG bunkering contract will enable BHP to manage fuel supply risk, build LNG operational capability internally, and also help to strengthen the emerging LNG bunkering market in the region. This contract is expected to form up to 10% of forecasted Asian LNG bunker demand in FY2023,” said Pant.