Methanol overtakes LNG as alternative fuel of choice

Latest figures released by DNV from its Alternative Fuels Insight (AFI) platform, reveal an 8% increase in ships ordered or retrofitted with alternative fuel propulsion in 2023.

DNV logged 138 projects for methanol, including retrofits, compared with 130 for LNG, all of which were for new ships. The almost four-fold increase in methanol-fuelled ships from 35 in the previous year indicated that methanol had gone ‘mainstream’, the classification society said. Container ships represented the lion’s share of new methanol contracts, 106, followed by 13 for bulk carriers and ten for pure car and truck carriers.

The 130-ship LNG tally in 2023 was down sharply on the 2022 total of 222. However, last year’s deals have taken the total of LNG-fuelled ships, excluding LNG carriers, through the 1,000-ship threshold, according to DNV. Container ship owners ordered 48 LNG-fuelled vessels, operators of car carriers 40, and tanker owners 30.

The AFI platform also recorded the first contracts for ships designed to run on ammonia – 11 were ordered. But hydrogen proved less popular compared with 2022 – down from 18 to five.  

Tags: AFI, DNV, Fuel, LNG, Methanol
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