Proman Stena Bulk has formally christened its methanol-fueled 49,900 deadweight tonnage (DWT) tanker Stena Pro Marine at the Port of New Orleans.
Stena Pro Marine is a dual-fuel mid-range (MR) tanker that was constructed at Guangzhou Shipyard International (GSI) in China. It has been in full-time operation since its delivery in 2022 and consumes 12,500 tons of methanol annually.
Burning methanol on board eliminates local pollutants like SOX and particulate matter (PM), reduces NOX emissions by 80% and lowers CO2 emissions by up to 15% on a tank-to-wake basis compared with conventional marine fuels. Given the Port of New Orleans’ standing as a US cruise port, and its proximity to the city, the ceremony also offered an opportunity to highlight the potential to mitigate local air pollution, offering a technology-proven and sustainable solution for the high volume of cruise and cargo traffic. Proman Stena Bulk highlighted that these reductions mean that its vessels can meet long-term decarbonization ambitions with near-term local pollutant reduction, benefitting communities such as those living and working around the Port of New Orleans.
The large volume of methanol storage and production facilities in the Houston and Louisiana region also offer access to storage and substantial volumes of methanol, underscoring the opportunity for the region to become a major hub for methanol as a marine fuel.
Dignitaries and guests from Proman and Stena Bulk, alongside figures from the US Gulf Coast’s maritime industries, assembled at the port to celebrate the methanol tanker. The naming ceremony was the first for a methanol-fueled vessel in the Port of New Orleans and the wider US Gulf Coast region. It concluded with a customary champagne christening.
Speaking at the naming ceremony, David Cassidy, chief executive of Proman, said, “Stena Pro Marine has already proven to be a significant addition to our fleet since its delivery in the middle of last year. Given the region’s importance to global energy supplies, we are thrilled to name this vessel in New Orleans. This event provides us with a wonderful opportunity to gather with partners, friends and industry leaders and reaffirm our commitment to supporting and enabling a sustainable shipping industry.”
Erik Hånell, president and CEO of Stena Bulk, added, “The naming ceremony for Stena Pro Marine comes as yet another marker on our shared journey with Proman to prove the viability of methanol as a marine fuel. By gathering in New Orleans, a key hub on the US Gulf Coast, we show to US and global shipping that methanol is technically feasible as a marine fuel today. We look forward to furthering our collective vision for methanol within the maritime industry.”
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