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BUNKER INDEX :: Price Index, News and Directory Information for the Marine Fuel Industry
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Biofuel-powered shipping route to launch from Rotterdam to New York

The first 'Good Trade Lane' is scheduled to launch in September.

Updated on 29 May 2017 08:21 GMT

The first biofuel-powered shipping route of the GoodShipping Program is due to be launched later this year.

The new initiative, which is the brainchild of Dutch firm GoodFuels Marine, is designed to give cargo owners the opportunity to control and reduce the carbon footprint of their ocean freight by transporting cargoes on routes where ships are powered by biofuel.

The first so-called 'Good Trade Lane' will be from Rotterdam to New York and is scheduled to commence in September, Astrid Sonneveld, Head of Marine & International, told Bunker Index on Monday.

"The GoodShipping Program empowers cargo owners and shippers to take control of their carbon emissions without having to rely upon the shipowner to change its fuel mix. Moreover, by allowing the cargo owner to purchase low-carbon, compatible and sustainable 'drop-in' biofuels, the opportunity to mitigate carbon emissions within the industry, rather than through an alternative mitigation scheme, is achievable for the very first time," GoodFuels said.

Dirk Kronemeijer, CEO of GoodFuels, commented: "Up until now, the only way ocean cargo owners could eliminate or substantially reduce the climate impact from ship operations was to select an energy-efficient carrier or to offset their carbon footprint outside the shipping industry. The big difference with other sustainability initiatives is that the GoodShipping Program actually changes the marine fuel mix, and thereby realizes a carbon reduction within the industry. Every ocean cargo owner can participate in the GoodShipping Program regardless of its volume, location, trade routes and existing contracts with carrier(s) or freight forwarders.

"However, they cannot drive the transition on their own: ultimately it needs to be facilitated by the maritime industry. It acts upon the collective responsibility for developing stable demand that can bring production to the next level. As such, the GoodShipping Program aims to improve the accessibility and affordability of low-carbon fuels to all carriers."

How it works

1. Program members determine the size and area in their operation where they would like to have the impact. This can be expressed in TEUs or as a percentage.

2. The GoodShipping Program committee selects the Good Trade Lane - the biofuel-powered route. Selection is said to be based on cost-effectiveness and "storyline".

3. The GoodShipping Program committee awards the opportunity to a carrier willing to allocate a vessel to the Good Trade Lane.

4. The GoodShipping Program makes sure the biofuel is supplied whilst the carriers and cargo owners continue their business as usual.

Bunker Index previously reported in September that GoodFuels Marine and another Dutch firm, Boskalis, said they had "successfully tested" a sustainable wood-based drop-in biofuel called UPM BioVerno on the 1696-deadweight-tonne (dwt) cutter suction dredger EDAX.

The fuel, supplied by Finland's UPM Biofuels, is said to be the first ever biofuel derived from wood residue used by a marine fleet.

In August, a U.S. Navy ship operated for the first time ever on a 100 percent drop-in renewable diesel fuel named ReadiDiesel. The product was developed by Applied Research Associates (ARA) and Chevron Lummus Global as a drop-in replacement for petroleum F-76 marine diesel.

Related Links:

New ISO marine fuel standard ushers in specs for biofuel blends
Preem, Vattenfall in large-scale biofuel production tie-up
US ups renewable fuel requirements for biofuel
Wood-based marine biofuel 'successfully tested'
US Navy completes trial with 100% renewable biofuel
United States

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