NYK bets on ammonia for sustainable bunkering

  • Market: Biofuels, Emissions, Fertilizers, Oil products, Petrochemicals
  • 09/22/23

Japanese shipping firm Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK) expects ammonia to account for about 50pc of its marine fuel demand by 2050.

The company, which has pledged net zero emissions from marine shipping by 2050, will utilize ammonia, biogas, synthetic methane and biofuels, but ammonia will take center stage by 2050, Junya Omoto, president of NYK's US Energy Transport, told the Argus Sustainable Marine Fuels Conference in Houston.

The company operates 814 vessels, with 90pc oil-fueled ships and 10pc LNG fueled-ships. Its LNG fueled ships include LNG carriers. By 2030, the company expects its share of oil-based marine fuel demand will decline to about 60pc, LNG consumption will increase to about 25pc and ammonia will account for the rest. By 2050, ammonia will account for about 50pc of NYK's bunker demand, biofuels and synthetic fuels will account for about 40pc and 10pc for biogas and synthetic methane, Omoto said.

NYK has looked into bio-methanol, but deems it hard to secure sufficient volumes.

In 2024, NYK will modify a tugboat that burns LNG as a marine fuel to run on ammonia. The company will launch of an ammonia-fueled ammonia gas carrier in October 2026. It is developing an ammonia floating storage and regasification barge (A-FSRB), aiming to prompt use of fuel-use ammonia, especially for co-firing at thermal power plants, but it has not announced an implementation date. NYK has also obtained an approval in principle to develop a carrier that can ship both ammonia and liquefied CO2. NYK expects the global CO2 carrier fleet demand to surpass 600 vessels by 2050 from less than 50 carriers currently. Demand for CO2 carriers will hinge on carbon pricing, volume captured and the location of storage sites.


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