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LNG-Powered Reimei Sets Sail: A Milestone for Sustainable Shipping

In a groundbreaking move towards sustainable maritime operations, Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd. (MOL) and Kyushu Electric Power Co., Inc. (Kyuden) proudly announced the commencement of operations for the LNG-fueled Panamax coal carrier, Reimei. This innovative vessel, equipped with low-environmental-impact liquefied natural gas (LNG) as its primary fuel, began its journey on November 14, marking a significant step forward in the industry’s commitment to reducing its carbon footprint.

Reimei’s Maiden Voyage

The naming and delivery ceremony, held at the Imari Shipyard and Works of Namura Shipbuilding Co., Ltd., saw the vessel officially named Reimei, symbolizing the dawn of a new era in eco-friendly shipping. This large LNG-fueled coal carrier, boasting impressive dimensions—234.92 meters in length, 38.0 meters in breadth, and a carrying capacity of 95,792 metric tons—will operate under the expert management of MOL, transporting coal from international sources to Kyuden’s coal-fired thermal power plants.

Environmental Impact and Advantages of LNG

Compared to traditional marine fuels, LNG presents a game-changing reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. Reimei is expected to cut carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by approximately 30%, eliminate sulfur oxides (SOx) entirely, and slash nitrogen oxides (NOx) by an impressive 80%. This environmentally conscious choice aligns with the global push for cleaner energy solutions in the maritime sector.

Fueling the Future: Innovative Bunkering Practices

Reimei embarked on its inaugural journey from Imari Port on November 14, heading to Tobata Port in Fukuoka Prefecture for a unique shore-to-ship bunkering process scheduled for November 15. During this operation, the vessel will directly receive LNG from the onshore terminal, showcasing the adaptability and efficiency of LNG as a marine fuel. Looking ahead, MOL and Kyuden are exploring ship-to-ship bunkering using dedicated LNG bunkering vessels, offering even more flexibility in fueling the eco-conscious carrier.

The Origin of Reimei

The vessel’s name, Reimei, draws inspiration from ‘Reihoku,’ the location of Kyuden’s coal-fired power plant, combined with the meaning of ‘Dawn.’ The name reflects the shared commitment to safe operations and the aspiration to illuminate a greener future for shipping.

Long-Term Commitment to Sustainable Energy Transport

This milestone builds upon the long-term transport agreement inked between MOL and Kyuden on December 25, 2019. Both companies remain steadfast in their dedication to ensuring a reliable energy resource transport while simultaneously minimizing the environmental impact of their operations.

As Reimei sets sail, it not only signifies a remarkable achievement in maritime engineering but also serves as a beacon illuminating the path towards a more sustainable and eco-friendly future for the shipping industry.

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