Total has signed a supply agreement with MSC Cruises for around 45,000 tonnes per year of LNG.
The fuel will be used on MSC Cruises’ newbuilding LNG-powered cruise ships that will call at Marseille from next year.
Pierfrancesco Vago, MSC Cruises’ Executive Chairman (pictured), said: “This agreement represents a further step in our ongoing journey towards continuously reducing our environmental footprint, for which LNG is currently a crucial component.
“As we prepare to launch our first of three upcoming LNG-powered cruise ships in 2022, through this key agreement Marseille will become our hub in the Mediterranean for the refuelling of our latest-generation and most environmentally advanced ships,” he explained.
Alexis Vovk, Total’s President, Marketing & Services, added: “We are proud to be developing the first LNG bunker supply chain in France, at the port of Marseille/Fos, together with shipping industry leaders, such as MSC Cruises with whom we nurture a long-lasting partnership worldwide in the field of bunkering services.
“Total will continue to step up investments in LNG bunkering to ultimately reach its target of serving more than 10% of the global market. By doing so, we will continue to accompany the energy transition of the shipping industry and the reduction of carbon emissions of our customers, in line with our climate ambition to get to net zero by 2050, together with society,” he said.
The supply contract comes with the direct support of Annick Girardin, French Minister for Marine Affairs, who said: “I welcome this agreement between MSC Cruises and Total. This is a strong commitment to the environment, which demonstrates that when major economic players commit to the ecological transition, they can access new levers for economic development.
“This is also what maritime France is all about! This agreement also illustrates France’s full potential for competitiveness and attractiveness. In line with the Fontenoy maritime forum, I wish that these links between shipowners, energy companies, ports and shipyards will continue to develop, in line with the sustainable development goals,” he said.
MSC Cruises’ LNG powered vessels will bring a range of environmental innovations to the market, including a 50 kW LNG-powered solid oxide fuel cell technology project that offers the potential to significantly further reduce greenhouse gas emissions, compared to a conventional LNG engine.
Total will bunker MSC Cruises’ LNG-powered cruise ships by ship-to-ship transfer, using its second LNG bunker vessel currently under construction. This vessel will use LNG as a fuel and integrate the complete reliquefaction of the boil-off gas.
By 2022, Total will operate two 18,600 cu m LNG bunkering vessels based in Rotterdam and Marseille and share the use of a third bunker vessel in Singapore.
In February, 2021, Total received a license from the Maritime & Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) to supply LNG in Singapore from 2022.