Singapore ‘ready for commercial scale methanol bunkering’ following milestone fuelling

The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) says it is ready for commercial scale methanol bunkering operations following the successful completion of the first simultaneous methanol fuelling and cargo operation (SIMOPS) at the world’s largest marine fuel hub.

The milestone delivery, which took place yesterday (27 May), involved X-Press Feeders, Global Energy Trading Pte Ltd (GET), and PSA Singapore (PSA). The use of the mass flow metering (MFM) system for methanol, together with the use of digital bunkering, was also trialled during the SIMOPS.

The fuelling follows the inaugural ship-to-containership methanol bunkering for the Laura Maersk in July 2023, and the ship-to-ship methanol bunkering of close to 1,340 metric tonnes of blended methanol for the Stena Prosperous on 24 May 2024.

The X-Press Feeder container vessel on its maiden voyage from Asia to Europe was successfully refuelled with close to 300 metric tonnes (mt) of bio-methanol by GET, an MPA-licensed bunker supplier, using MT KARA, a dedicated IMO type II chemical bunker tanker classified by Bureau Veritas and operated by Stellar Shipmanagement Services.

The methanol fuel was supplied simultaneously while the container vessel was completing container moves. The SIMOPS was completed in four hours.

With these operations, the Port of Singapore says it is ‘ready for commercial scale operations’ for shore-to-ship, ship-to-ship, and SIMOPS for methanol – and added that the same methodology is being followed for ‘other new maritime fuels such as ammonia and hydrogen.’

The ISCC-certified bio-methanol used for the SIMOPS was produced by OCI Global and supplied via GET. The fuel was lifted at Vopak Penjuru Terminal, Singapore.

‘The successful execution of the SIMOPS is the outcome of many months of preparation for tripartite stakeholders to plan, prepare, and train to ensure the safety of the crew, port and vessel, while maintaining a high level of efficiency,’ said Teo Eng Dih, Chief Executive, MPA.

‘The learnings gained from these operations will help to further refine the various SOPs and safety measures. We thank all our SIMOPS partners in helping to achieve this and we look forward to working with other like-minded partners, including on the use of digital bunkering and mass flow meter solutions, to operationalise the delivery of the new marine fuels in Singapore.’

Image: Shutterstock

Rhys Berry