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BUNKER INDEX :: Price Index, News and Directory Information for the Marine Fuel Industry
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LNG training seminar delivered in Panama

Three-day seminar for Panama Canal Authority and Panama Government also covered LNG bunkering.

Updated on 25 Nov 2016 14:20 GMT

The US Coast Guard's Liquefied Gas Carrier National Center of Expertise (LGC NCOE) recently delivered a three-day liquefied natural gas (LNG) training seminar to the Panama Canal Authority, Panamanian government and local first responders.

Members of the LGC NCOE staff covered the chemical and physical properties of LNG - including flammability, the lower explosive limit (LEL), compression and cryogenic characteristics - and the general arrangement of LNG carriers, their safety systems and cargo operations.

The LGC NCOE also discussed LNG bunkering and LNG as a marine fuel, LNG terminals and examined LNG facility and LNG carrier incident case studies.

Commenting on the training programme, the US Coast Guard said: "It ensures personnel responsible for the safety and administration of the Panama Canal receive initial education, or review, on safety/security equipment and procedures for handling LNG transits. Additionally, it strengthens the U.S. strategic partnerships and provides essential expertise to this critical and growing international shipping market."

Earlier this year, in June, the expansion of the Panama Canal was completed with the launch of a third set of locks. The expansion doubles the capacity of the Panama Canal and adds a new lane capable for larger New Panamax ships to pass the locks. More specifically, the expansion also allows for larger-sized LNG carriers to transit the canal.

Back in July, Bunker Index explained how the Panama Canal expansion will affect global LNG trade, as it is now able to accommodate 90 percent of the world's current LNG tankers. Previously, only 6 percent of the global fleet could transit the canal. Now, only the largest Q-Flex and Q-Max LNG tankers used for exports from Qatar will not be able to use the canal.

Not only will the expansion reduce travel time and fuel costs, but it will allow LNG shipments from the U.S. Gulf Coast to access key markets in the Pacific and East Asia - a region that accounts for almost two-thirds of global LNG imports.

In June, the US Coast Guard issued recommendations in a report on how to safely handle and use LNG fuels.

Along with the safety report, the USCG released two checklists of recommended activities to be carried out when handling LNG bunkers. They are:

1. LNG Bunkering Job Aid

This checklist details what should be done by those in the vessel and those in the refilling facility.

2. LNG Fuel System Inspection Job Aid

The checklist outlines what an inspector should be looking for when inspecting an LNG fuel system.

Related Links:

Panama Canal's contribution to saving fuel highlighted at MEPC 70
Panama Canal expansion ceremony
Monjasa: Five insights on how the Panama Canal expansion affects the local bunker industry
How Panama Canal expansion will affect global LNG trade
First oil tanker transit of new Panama Canal
Panama Canal

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