Baleària began the work of retrofitment of the Bahama Mama ferry so that it can operate with LNG. Once the process is finished, in mid-January, this vessel will become the fifth in Baleària’s fleet to use this cleaner fuel, which considerably reduces emissions. The 154- meter-long ship has a capacity for 1,000 passengers and 350 vehicles.
The works, which are carried out at the Gibdock shipyard in Gibraltar, are expected to take four months and consist of the installation of two LNG storage tanks and the adaptation of the engines so that they can be propelled by this fuel. The two new tanks, which will be located in the stern area of the upper deck, have a capacity of 140 cubic meters each, which will allow the Bahama Mama to have a range of about 750 nautical miles.
Thus, the ship’s two current engines (MAK9M43C) will switch to version 9M46DF and will become LNG dual fuel engines. With this change of fuel, the ferry is expected to stop emitting 9,257 tons of CO2 and 885 tons of NOx per year, and completely eliminate sulfur and particulate emissions (which means 77 tons of SOx). The annual CO2 savings would be the equivalent of eliminating some 6,600 cars of the streets. In addition to reducing CO2 (-35%) and NOx (-85%) emissions, and eliminating sulfur and particulate emissions, LNG also reduces noise pollution by 50%.
The use of LNG is a strategic commitment of Baleària, which responds to criteria of social responsibility and economic profitability. Along these lines, the shipping company is immersed in various projects that will allow it to have nine LNG-powered ships in the next two years. In addition to three new constructions (of which two are already in operation: Marie Curie and Hypatia de Alejandría), another of the projects is the retrofiment of six of its vessels. At the moment, the conversion works have already been completed in two of them: Nápoles and Abel Matutes, while Bahama Mama will join them in January.