Stolt Tankers performs groundbreaking ship-to-ship methanol bunkering

Stolt Tankers is pleased to be part of the team that conducted the first-ever ship-to-ship methanol bunkering on a non-tanker vessel, a milestone in the transition to alternative marine fuels.

Bunkering took place in the Port of Gothenburg on January 23, on Stena Line’s methanol-propelled roll-on/roll-off and passenger vessel Stena Germanica. The ship became the world’s first methanol-powered ferry in 2015 and, until now, it has been bunkered from trucks. Stolt Tankers’ Stolt Sandpiper (operated as part of the E&S Tankers pool) was on hand to safely complete the ship-to-ship bunkering, which represents a significant step in the journey towards methanol becoming a viable greener fuel alternative for ships. 

The successful bunkering was a collaborative effort between the Port of Gothenburg, which was the first in the world to publish operating regulations for methanol bunkering in April 2022; Stena Line, the owner of the vessel and the purchaser of the methanol; methanol producer and supplier Methanex; and Stolt Tankers, which carried out the bunkering itself.

Lucas Vos, President of Stolt Tankers, said: "Stolt Tankers is delighted to have taken part in this world-first for methanol bunkering. We are committed to our own journey towards carbon neutrality and to working with industry partners to explore ways to decarbonise the maritime sector as a whole. This project shows that, through collaboration and innovation, we can make real progress towards a more sustainable future for the industry.”

Methanol is one of a number of fuel alternatives being explored across the shipping sector as operators strive to meet increasingly strict emissions regulations. It offers the potential to reduce emissions of sulphur oxides (SOx), nitrogen oxides (NOx) and particulate matter, and can be produced from renewable sources. When used as a fuel for ships methanol has the potential to reduce onboard CO2 emissions by around 10%.