ONE considers hybrid fuel or LNG ahead of sulphur cap

ONE is in discussions with bunker suppliers. Credit: Dietmar Hasenpusch
ONE is in discussions with bunker suppliers. Credit: Dietmar Hasenpusch

Ocean Network Express (ONE) is likely to burn low-sulphur hybrid oil to comply with the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) sulphur cap in 2020.

In a statement on 4 September, ONE said that low-sulphur hybrid oil is the most realistic and cost-efficient solutions to comply with the sulphur cap.

The pan-Japanese liner operator launched operations on 1 April, but is based in Singapore.

ONE was formed from the integration of the container shipping units of Japan’s Big Three shipping groups, Mitsui OSK LinesNYK Line, and Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha (“K” Line).

IMO has set regulations to limit sulphur content in marine fuels to 0.5% and this will be effective 1 January 2020.

Current global limits for sulphur content in marine fuels is 3.5%.

ONE said it is discussing with bunker suppliers with regard to procuring low-sulphur hybrid oil.

The company added, “As building new vessels with scrubbers may take two to three years, this approach may not be in time for ONE to be compliant by January 2020. However, we will consider this approach as possible for the next phase.”

ONE will also consider chartering scrubber-fitted ships.

While liquefied natural gas (LNG) is one of the compliant fuels, the shortage of LNG bunkering facilities is a drawback.

ONE added, “Similarly to the building of new vessels with scrubbers, it takes two to three years to build a new LNG-powered ship. Services where ONE can deploy LNG-powered vessels are also limited as there are constraints on availability of LNG bunkering facilities. Although our deployment plan for LNG-powered vessels isn’t concrete at this moment, evaluation is under way where development of the LNG bunkering environment is being further analysed.”