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Scrubbers estimated to take up 200 TEU of ship space

SCRUBBERS installed on mega containerships could take up 'at least 200 TEU' of container slots, according to Alphaliner which based its estimate on Evergreen's G-Class 20,150-TEU newbuild, the Ever Govern, that is under construction at a shipyard in Japan

Scrubbers estimated to take up 200 TEU of ship space

SCRUBBERS installed on mega containerships could take up 'at least 200 TEU' of container slots, according to Alphaliner which based its estimate on Evergreen's G-Class 20,150-TEU newbuild, the Ever Govern, that is under construction at a shipyard in Japan

17 March 2019 - 19:00

SCRUBBERS installed on mega containerships could take up 'at least 200 TEU' of container slots, according to Alphaliner which based its estimate on Evergreen's G-Class 20,150-TEU newbuild, the Ever Govern, that is under construction at a shipyard in Japan.

Alphaliner said it appeared that the scrubber housed in the newbuild would be six or seven containers wide and occupy a 40-foot container bay.



'Quite a notable negative effect upon the ship's container capacity,' it said, reported UK's The Loadstar.



When deciding on a strategy to comply with the International Maritime Organization's low sulphur marine fuel rule that comes into effect in January 2020, an unknown factor in the calculation is the actual difference in price between heavy fuel oil (HFO) and marine fuel with a maximum 0.5 per cent sulphur content, known as low sulphur fuel oil (LSFO).



Although, the bunker industry does not expect to publish forward pricing for LSFO until the third quarter this year, the expectation is that the 'spread' will be in the region of US$200 per tonne.



Given that a mega containership burns 200 tonnes of fuel a day while at sea, on that basis the price of retrofitting a scrubber to existing fleet, along with the six-week cost of taking the vessel out of service, could be recovered in under two years.



However, at the TPM Conference in Long Beach there was a considerable divergence of opinion by analysts of what the increase in price of LSFO will be compared to HFO, with some suggesting that the gap might be as low as $50 per tonne.



One speaker argued that since the majority of demand post IMO 2020 will be for LSFO - only five per cent of the global container fleet is expected to have scrubbers fitted by the new regulation's implementation date - the price of the compliant fuel would drop over time.



What was of more concern to carriers that The Loadstar spoke to at TPM was whether the bunker industry could meet the immediate demand for the switch to LSFO in the months leading up to the official launch date.



'We will have to start bunkering our ships with LSFO sometime in the fourth quarter,' said one operations director of a carrier, 'but before we bunker with the low sulphur fuel we will have to spend some time in port cleaning the tanks and pipes or the new fuel will be contaminated,' he warned.



At a breakfast briefing during TPM, Hapag-Lloyd's chief executive Rolf Habben Jansen told the publication that a 'ballpark figure' for the trial retro-fitting of one of its 'LNG-ready' 15,000-TEU vessels was $25 million.



According to vesselsvalue.com the current value of the four-year-old 14,993 TEU Sajir, the ex-UASC ship which Hapag-Lloyd is fitting out with liquefied natural gas (LNG) tanks, is $80 million.


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