Updated: Jan 15, 2020
Ports need to be prepared for longer ship waiting times and to invest in new infrastructure as a result of the upcoming International Maritime Organization (IMO) Marpol Annex VI 0.5% sulphur regulation, a technology expert has warned.
DELFT; Nov. 16, 2018 – Speaking to Port Strategy, Daan Merkestein, senior consultant at Systems Navigator said that as vessel operators switch to fuel like Marine Gasoil (MGO), which are compliant with the regulation, ports that have bunkering services could see an increase in the number of vessels calling at it and therefore an increase in waiting times.
“Since MGO vessels usually bring smaller parcels than High Sulphur Fuel Oil (HSFO) vessels, there is an increase in the number of vessel arrivals berthing at the terminal to be expected. This has an influence on berth occupancies and therefore on ship waiting times.”
While there could be decreased bunkering barge turnaround times as flow rates increase with use of MGO, which has a lower viscosity than the currently-commonly-used HSFO, Mr Merkestein pointed out that ports might also see “pre/post pump times and the risk of product contamination increase”.
He added that current infrastructure used for HSFO might not be suitable to be used for MGO without any investment and terminals might not be able to continue providing bunkering services to the vessels without scrubber equipment.
Vessels may also use (Ultra) Low Sulphur Fuel Oil (LSFO) to a lesser extent, said Mr Merkestein. More changes may be ahead if refineries are able to accommodate the LSFO demand and the bunkering product mix changes again from the expensive MGO to LSFO.
Systems Navigator has recently performed a IMO 2020 scan of the Port of Fujairah's port logistics. Find out more here.
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