CMA CGM and TotalEnergies have launched its inaugural ship-to-containership Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) bunkering operation in the Port of Marseille Fos, Southern France.
CMA CGM BALI, a 15,000 TEU LNG-powered containership is deployed on the MEX 1 service, connecting Asia and South Europe.
The vessel is being refuelled by TotalEnergies’ Gas Vitality, the first LNG bunker vessel based in France, with around 6,000m3 of LNG, by means of a ship-to-ship transfer alongside the Eurofos container terminal, while the containership carried out cargo operations simultaneously.
The Gas Vitality is TotalEnergies’ second chartered LNG bunker vessel and owned by Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd (MOL).
In November 2017, CMA CGM committed to equipping its flagship 23,000-TEU vessels with engines using LNG – a first in the history of shipping for Ultra Large Container Vessels. CMA CGM has chosen TotalEnergies as part of a major industrial partnership to supply them with gas in Rotterdam, Singapore and Marseille.
By the end of 2024, the CMA CGM Group will have a fleet of 44 LNG-powered vessels, ‘emethane ready’ of various sizes and 24 are already in service. The engines deployed on these vessels already have the technical capability of using bio-methane and emethane, a carbon-neutral fuel.
Christine Cabau, Executive Vice President Operations and Assets of the CMA CGM Group, said: “This LNG bunkering operation is an important milestone for our group, in many ways.
“It sets France and Marseille maritime and port cluster on the frontline for the decarbonisation of shipping. It enhances LNG solutions as the first step of a broader industrial strategy that will take us to alternative fuels such as biomethane and e-methane.
“It is also another proof of the commitment of CMA CGM toward Marseilles and its region. We are very proud to act both globally and locally to develop sustainably our business”.
Hervé Martel, CEO, Port of Marseille Fos, added: “This is a new milestone for the port of Marseille Fos, which is undoubtedly an essential LNG hub in the Mediterranean.
“This operation is proof of effective joint work and an additional attractiveness argument for our port.”