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Germany examines LNG for port vehicles

Utility group RWE working with port officials on program to study alternative fuels.

By Daniel J. Graeber
Germany examines LNG for port vehicles
Germany's RWE said it would work with a regional port authority to review LNG as a fuel source for port vessels. File Photo by Stephen Shaver/UPI | License Photo

ESSEN, Germany, Jan. 4 (UPI) -- German utility group RWE said it would work with port officials to create infrastructure to fuel vessels with cleaner-burning liquefied natural gas.

RWE said it was committed to working alongside the Duisport group, the operator of the Port of Duisburg, to build the mobile fueling stations and other means to fuel port vehicles with the super-cooled form of natural gas.

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"The port of Duisburg provides excellent possibilities for the use of LNG," RWE's Andree Stracke said in a statement. "As the biggest inland port in the world it has a perfect connection to all traffic channels."

A pilot phase involves mobile fueling stations and conversion of port vehicles to work on LNG. The German company said vehicles would be tested in daily operations under a combined first-step investment of around $520,000.

In October, French energy company ENGIE said it was moving on efforts to promote LNG as an alternative fuel source for maritime shippers, signing an an agreement with French shipping company CMA CGM.

Maritime travel company Carnival Corp. also last year signed a deal to power its cruise ships with LNG supplied by Dutch energy company Shell. Carnival under the terms of the deal became the first company of its kind to commit to powering vessels with the alternative fuel source.

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LNG serves as a commercially-attractive alternative for a transportation fuel in part because of its ease of transport and volumetric advantages over liquid fuels. RWE added that its "far more eco-friendly" when compared with conventional fuels.

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