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Safe use of natural gas as marine fuel addressed in Naples

New mandatory code for ships using gases or other low-flashpoint fuels discussed.





Updated on 12 May 2017 09:53 GMT

The safe use of natural gas as marine fuel was in focus at the ConferenzaGNL 2017 International Conference on Liquefied Natural Gas for Transport and Industry, held in Naples, Italy, on May 10-11.

At the event, IMO's Loukas Kontogiannis gave an update on IMO regulations on the subject - specifically, the International Code of Safety for Ships using Gases or other Low-flashpoint Fuels (IGF Code), which entered into force on January 1, 2017.

The new mandatory code for ships using gases or other low-flashpoint fuels entered into force in January along with new training requirements for seafarers working on those ships.

The IGF Code aims to minimize the risk to ships, their crews and the environment, given the nature of the fuels involved.

Amendments to the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) require new ships using gases or other low-flashpoint fuels to comply with the requirements of the IGF code, which contains mandatory provisions for the arrangement, installation, control and monitoring of machinery, equipment and systems using low-flashpoint fuels, focusing initially on liquefied natural gas (LNG).

The amendments to SOLAS chapter II-1 (Construction - Structure, subdivision and stability, machinery and electrical installations), include amendments to Part F Alternative design and arrangements, to provide a methodology for alternative design and arrangements for machinery, electrical installations and low-flashpoint fuel storage and distribution systems; and a new Part G Ships using low-flashpoint fuels, to add new regulations to require ships constructed after the entry into force on 1 January 2017 to comply with the requirements of the IGF Code. Related amendments to chapter II-2 and Appendix (Certificates) also enter into force.

The IGF Code addresses all areas that need special consideration for the use of low-flashpoint fuels, taking a goal-based approach, with goals and functional requirements specified for each section forming the basis for the design, construction and operation of ships using this type of fuel.

The two-day ConferenzaGNL event is an initiative launched in 2012 to promote the use of LNG in the Mediterranean region of Europe.

This year's conference held plenary sessions dedicated to general topics (market scenarios, policies and development programs), discussion sessions addressing specific issues (shipping, inland waterways and land transport) and a series of technical seminars.






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