“LNG in Baltic Sea Ports Projects” | Joint Conference
Over seventy LNG stakeholders- Ship owners, shipping lines, LNG traders, operators of gas infrastructure, bunkering companies and various EU and Baltic regional organisation representatives gathered at the Final Conference of the LNG in Baltic Sea Ports Project and Kick-off of the LNG in Baltic Sea Ports II held on-board Viking Grace on 3rd December 2014.
Mr Per Olof Jansson - Project Leader and Chairman of the Steering Committee ‘LNG in Baltic Sea Ports’ projects welcomed all participants and project members. Mr Jansson remarked “I think we will see a much larger interest for LNG in the next couple of years of course depending on the price development of MGO and other alternative fuels. On the other hand there has been a growing interest in Sweden within the trucking industry for LNG as a fuel due to demand from large owners of food and retail chains to have a more environmental friendly mode of transportation. The combination between sea and land transportation is the key to the investments in infrastructure for LNG in the future”
Mr Emil Arolski - Project Manager of LNG in Baltic Sea Ports Projects, has been moderating the LNG conference and together with Mr Bogdan Oldakowski, Secretary General of the Baltic Ports Organization, welcomed all Project Partners and proceeded with the signing of an official “Declaration of LNG Availability”. Representatives from the seven ports have signed declaration stating their aim to “continue the development of LNG small scale bunkering infrastructure facilities at their Ports and will aim to offer LNG as a fuel for vessels by 2025 in line with Clean Fuel Directive”.
First session of the conference included presentations and summarizing reports from:
Mihaela Marku, INEA, European Commission, has ensured that initiatives as the LNG in the Baltic Sea Ports Projects are salutary and the EC will continue to support this kind of projects under upcoming calls for proposals and financial instrument. “The higher co-funding rates of 30% for similar investments in 2014-2020 should encourage submission of such action” she added.
Bjarke Wiehe Bøtcher, Chief Advisor and Priority Area Coordinator for EU Strategy for the BSR added that the project was granted the Flagship status by DMA within ”Priority Area Ship”. Moreover, project was succesfully aevaluated and established a benchmark for LNG small scale infratsructure facilities projects in the BSR.
Ulrika Roupé, Project Manager, SSPA Sweden AB, has shown a background, objectives, outline as well as final status of the LNG in Baltic Sea Ports project. In addition, Mrs. Roupé has given the answer to the question, what the continuing challenges for LNG as a marine fuel are. According to her presentation, firstly all business cases (in Northern Europe) built on existing shore side infrastructure and demand. Secondly, future LNG price must be competitive with HFO and scrubbers, which are under developing. The next challenge is still too expensive and too high risk to build infrastructure with the sole of supplying LNG as a marine fuel.
Per-Olof Lingwall, Swedish Transport Administrations, CEF-T/TEN-T Project Controller, has presented the organisations’ efforts to boost Sweden’s infrastructure with the co-financing from the EU programmes. He talked about latest initiatives (54 open actions, of which 21 belonging to the MoS), as well as the number of applications within the last three calls.
Panel discussions with all seven partnering ports representatives have been underlining the Project’s activities undertaken, conclusions and findings within the Project Partnering ports.
During the afternoon session Mr Emil Arolski highlighted that altogether with the leading coordinator –Port of Helsingborg, four new partner ports joined the “LNG in BSP II” initiative – Klaipėdos Nafta , Rostock, Sundsvall and Trelleborg – giving in effect an extensive network of 11 ports with planned facilities for LNG bunkering in the Baltic Sea Region.
Within the afternoon session of the conference with main focus on the sequel project “LNG in BSP II” presentations were held by:
Ms Monika Przepelska-Öström, Deputy Director, Ministry of Enterprise, Energy and Communications, has summarised the importance of the LNG in Baltic Sea ports project from the perspective of the Swedish Ministry.
Furthermore, Ms Mercedes de Juan, Fundación Valenciaport, has described the LNG Case Study of Valencia Port. For Ms de Juan taking part in the LNG Conference was a very important and valuable.” Representatives of the LNG sector within the Baltic Sea Region have a lot of knowledge and it is a great opportunity to know how LNG is working in another area and share our experience” she summarized.
Next of the special guest was Mr Keith Meyer, CEO, LNG America, who has presented overview of the LNG market across the ocean. According to him, LNG bunkering is happening globally and is coming to the US, but at this moment there are only 4 approved applications for LNG export terminals and 1 export terminal nearing completion. Mr Meyer has been impressed by the scale of LNG development within the Baltic Region.
Afternoon panel discussion has been arranged in order to present the follow-up project “LNG in BSP II” and to present the five Project Partners intentions within the framework of the LNG infrastructure facilities project.
Mr Arolski confirmed that “LNG in BSP” Project concluded with the publication of “LNG Handbook” that highlights Baltic Sea Region as a benchmark for implementation of LNG. The Handbook is based on the experiences gained from the participating ports in the project, as well as other ports in the area with experience from establishing LNG terminals and LNG as ship fuel.
The conference concluded with an exciting visit to Viking Grace’s engine room.