Gasunie and Royal Vopak have taken the final investment decision to add LNG break bulk infrastructure and services to its joint venture, Gate terminal, located at the port of Rotterdam. The new facility is expected to boost the use of LNG as a transportation fuel in the Netherlands and Northwest Europe. Break bulk (or small-scale) services aim to split up large-scale LNG shipments into smaller quantities, allowing the distribution of LNG as a fuel for maritime vessels, ferries, trucks and industrial applications.
The Port of Rotterdam Authority is involved in this project with the design and construction of a dedicated harbor basin for break bulk operations and has already introduced new regulations that allow LNG bunkering for inland barges and ship-to-ship bunkering of seagoing vessels. Construction is scheduled to start this year, while the commissioning and commencement of the first services of this new LNG infrastructure for tanker barges and other small tankers (with a maximum capacity of 280 berthing slots per year) are planned for H1 2016. By then, a whole supply chain for LNG will be available in the port of Rotterdam.
As launching customer, Shell will also play a key role in enabling the project. From Gate in Rotterdam, it will be possible for customers like Shell to supply LNG to bunker stations in the Wadden area, Scandinavia, the Baltics, but also to stations along the Rhine, Main and Danube – thus providing a low emissions fuel alternative to transporters all over Europe.
Moreover, the new infrastructure at Gate terminal will represent an important step in achieving the goals of the ‘Green Deal Rhine and Wadden’. This partnership between the Dutch government, business and knowledge institutes aims to promote green growth. With its extended break bulk facilities, Gate terminal will be at the basis of cleaner transport by road, inland waterways and coastal shipping throughout Northern Europe.
Source: Royal Vopak / Gasunie