This week, Stena Line’s ‘Stena Germanica’ sailed from Sweden to Germany powered by recycled methanol.
The new fuel dubbed ‘Blue Methanol’, is recycled from residual steel gases, a by product of the steel production industry and helps reduce the ferry’s reliance on diesel, thus further lowering the vessel’s carbon emissions.
This journey was claimed to be another milestone in this project, which was launched in 2015 when ‘Stena Germanica’s dual-fuel system was converted for operations on both methanol and diesel fuel.
She is the world’s first methanol powered ropax and operates on the Gothenburg/Kiel route.
Stena Line developed this fuel system with several partners, including Methanex, Wärtsilä and EU’s Motorways of the Seas project. The conversion was claimed to be the world’s first.
“It is exciting to be part of our sustainable journey and try out another new sustainable fuel. I can confirm that we sailed with the new fuel from Gothenburg to Kiel on 22nd June and it worked very well,” said Peter Holm, ‘Stena Germanica’ Chief Engineer.
While methanol is a fossil fuel, it is much cleaner than traditional marine fuel. Sulphur and particulates are reduced by 90% and nitrogen by 60%.
The steel industry and the maritime sector are two of the world’s biggest emitters of CO2, accounting for 6-8% and 2.5% of all CO2 emissions respectively.
The FReSMe project, funded by H2020 EU programme, aims to demonstrate the whole process that enables the CO2 captured from the steel industry to produce methanol fuel that will be used as fuel in the maritime sector.
“This collaboration between the steel and the maritime sectors is the first of its kind and demonstrates that by working together companies from different backgrounds can greatly improve their effect on the climate.
“For Stena Line, this is another successful proof of concept for our methanol conversion ferry and a further bridge towards our aim of fossil free shipping,” said Erik Lewenhaupt, Head of Sustainability Stena Line Group.