CMA CGM and Shell perform first Bio-LNG bunkering operation in Rotterdam


The CMA CGM Group, a world leader in shipping and logistics, and Shell have performed the first Bio-LNG bunkering trial in Rotterdam.

The CONTAINERSHIPS AURORA, a 1,400 TEU (Twenty-foot Equivalent Units) LNG-powered vessel, was bunkered by Shell with a nearly 10% blend of low carbon Bio-LNG while calling at Rotterdam. The vessel received around 483 m3 (219 tonnes) of LNG, 44 m3 (20 tonnes) of which were Bio-LNG.

Safe and efficient bunkering operation was performed by the barge LNG LONDON at the Rotterdam Short Sea Terminals [RST]. The operation was thus successfully conducted by means of a ship-to-ship transfer while the CONTAIRNERSHIPS AURORA carried out cargo operations simultaneously, ensuring schedule integrity.

Bio-LNG, a new and immediately available solution on the path to carbon-neutral shipping

Shell’s Bio-LNG offering, combined with the dual-fuel gas engine technology developed by CMA CGM, has the potential to further reduce greenhouse gas emissions (including carbon dioxide) by at least 67 % well-to-wake (the complete value chain) compared to VLSFO.

Produced from agricultural and industrial food waste, Bio-LNG has demonstrated the future potential of the Bio-LNG supply chain. Results from the trial will give the maritime sector a vital demonstration into the scalability, sustainability and technical compliance of Bio-LNG.

Biomethane and e-methane, non-fossil energies to play a key role in the energy transition

The CMA CGM Group’s dual-fuel gas vessels, which operate today with LNG and biomethane, already have the technical capability of using e-methane (instead of LNG), a source of carbon-neutral fuel. This “e-methane ready” fleet consists of 20 vessels already in service and a total of 44 vessels by the end of 2024.

In addition to this new milestone in the use of Bio-LNG for shipping, CMA CGM supported in 2021 the production of 25,000 tonnes of biomethane (equivalent to a year’s fuel consumption of four 1,400-TEU LNG-powered ships), which in turn supports Shell to develop production capacity to further accelerate the availability to a wider market.

Thus, CMA CGM is accelerating its commitment to leading the energy transition in the shipping sector. With biomethane, CMA CGM provides customers with a new and immediately available solution towards more sustainable supply chain.

Tahir Faruqui, General Manager, Shell Global Downstream LNG said: “Shell believes LNG is the first integral step to decarbonise the Shipping sector. LNG offers immediate emissions reduction and has the potential to become a net zero emission marine fuel given the possible roles of Bio-LNG and synthetic LNG. We look forward to assessing how the supply chain might be scaled to enable LNG to become a viable carbon neutral marine fuel.”

Farid Trad, Vice President of the CMA CGM Group, Energy transition and Bunkering, said: “CMA CGM believes LNG is one of the first steps towards achieving our target to achieve net zero carbon by 2050. LNG-powered vessels enable to reach, as of today, step 2 of this process which is the use of Bio-LNG. The Group is heavily investing in research and development alongside its industrial partners to identify the energy sources of the future with the aim of achieving total decarbonation and help have a positive impact on our customers’ carbon footprint and helping to protect the environment.”

Source: CMA CGM