April 2017 marks one-year since Waterfront Shipping (WFS) welcomed seven of the world’s first ocean-going vessels capable of running on methanol into its fleet. The first three vessels were delivered in April and the remaining four later in 2016. These innovative vessels have achieved accolades from the marine industry for their use of clean-burning methanol as an alternative marine fuel. Over the past year, the seven 50,000 dead weight tonne methanol tankers – powered by two-stroke dual-fuel engines capable of running on methanol, fuel oil, marine diesel oil or gas oil – have been operating safely and reliably across the globe.
In collaboration with Marinvest/Skagerack Invest (Marinvest), Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd. (MOL), and Westfal-Larsen Management (WL), Waterfront Shipping's vision for the use of methanol as a cleaner marine fuel shows great promise. "With the recent announcement by IMO for a global 0.5% sulfur cap for vessels worldwide effective 2020, methanol will soon be one of the very few fuel alternatives to MGO that can be utilized by existing modern vessels after relatively minor and cost effective retro-fit modifications compared to, for instance, LNG," says Rolf Westfal-Larsen Jr., CEO Westfal-Larsen Management.