Total AND CMA CGM complete world’s largest liquefied natural gas bunkering operation

Source: press release, 16 November 2020

The world’s largest cargo ship powered by LNG, the CMA CGM ‘Jacques Saadé’
The world’s largest cargo ship powered by LNG, the CMA CGM ‘Jacques Saadé’ (photo: CMA CGM)

The CMA CGM Jacques Saadé, the world’s largest containership powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG) has completed her first LNG bunkering with Total’s LNG bunker vessel, the Gas Agility, on November 13th 2020 at the Port of Rotterdam in the Netherlands. The 23,000 TEU (twenty-foot equivalent unit) containership received around 17,300 m3 of LNG, making it the largest LNG bunkering operation to ever take place.

Safe and efficient bunkering operation was performed by the Gas Agility at the Rotterdam World Gateway terminal by means of a ship-to-ship transfer, while the CMA CGM Jacques Saadé carried out cargo operations simultaneously. The supply of LNG was provided by Total Marine Fuels Global Solutions, Total’s dedicated business unit in charge of worldwide bunkering activities. Refuelling took approximately 24 hours to complete.

As part of this milestone operation, the carbon footprint of the LNG delivered was further reduced with the introduction of biomethane for approximately 13% of the quantity delivered, through the Guarantee of Origin (GO) certificates mechanism. The biomethane is produced in the Schipol area in the Netherlands, mainly by organic municipal waste

The pioneering bunkering operation is a ground-breaking development for the global LNG market and concretely demonstrates Total and CMA CGM’s pledge to advance the use of LNG as a marine fuel, the best, immediately available solution in terms of energy transition to help reduce the environmental footprint of maritime transport. LNG makes it possible to eliminate almost all the air pollutants generated by the combustion of fossil fuels:

  • 99% of sulphur oxide emissions;
  • 99% of fine particles emissions;
  • Up to 85% of nitrogen oxide emissions.

An LNG-powered vessel also emits up to 20% less CO2 than conventional fuel-powered systems. The development of bio and synthetic LNG will further drive forward LNG as a viable pathway to support the International Maritime Organization’s strategy on reducing GHG emissions from international shipping. Synthetic LNG is LNG derived from the synthesis of CO2 and hydrogen; it is considered a zero-emission fuel when produced from renewable hydrogen and recycled CO2.

“We are really proud of this landmark achievement, which is the culmination of a 3-year close collaboration between Total and CMA CGM,” says Jérôme Leprince-Ringuet, Vice President Marine Fuels at Total. “It also marks the shipping industry’s first commercial use of biomethane on this scale. Such introduction reflects Total’s ambition to get to Net Zero by 2050 and our commitment to help reduce the carbon intensity of the energy products used by our customers.”

“CMA CGM has chosen Total as part of a major industrial partnership to supply them with gas. Thereby making CMA CGM the initiator in structuring a genuine LNG field of excellence in maritime transport,” says Christine Cabau, CMA CGM Executive Vice President, Group Industrial Assets. “The pioneering choice of LNG we announced in 2017 is a step forward to achieve our objective of being carbon neutral by 2050 and to accelerate the energy transition in transport and logistics.”