TOKYO-Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd. (MOL) has announced that it plans to procure a new-building Panamax bulker to transport woody biomass for energy as its main cargo, in light of stronger demand for carbon neutral biomass fuels, especially by power companies in Japan.
The new vessel's specifications are in pre-compliance with the Energy Efficiency Design Index (EEDI) phase 3, the environmental regulations that will be adopted in 2025. The specifications also call for reinforced mooring equipment and a wide-opening hatch design to boost the efficiency of cargo handling and is more suitable for the transportation of woody biomass for energy for Japanese power companies. It is slated for delivery at Oshima Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. in 2023.
The MOL Power Solution & Carbon Project Division is in charge of the business operation for the new-building vessel, provision of transport plans, and ship operation. The division was established this April to meet diversified needs of customers, including Japanese power companies, and offer solutions for decarbonisation in addition to transporting conventional fuels.
The addition of the new vessel to the fleet will expand the MOL Group's capabilities to serve companies that need woody biomass for energy, and complement the 10 000 to approximately 80 000 t ocean-going and coastal dry bulk carriers operated by MOL Drybulk Ltd. and MOL Coastal Shipping, Ltd.
Woody biomass for energy is a plant-derived fuel, and regarded as one that can realise a carbon neutral state, based on the concept that burning these fuels does not increase the CO2 concentration because carbon previously absorbed by trees is returned to the air.
The MOL Group takes an earnest approach to facing environmental issues and draws upon its group-wide strength as it seeks to achieve sustainable net-zero green-house gas (GHG) emissions. In addition, as part of its environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) initiatives, the group is moving ahead with businesses that will lead to reduced environmental impact, including transport of responsibly managed woody biomass for energy.
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