China Navigation Eco-ships: “Green Shipbuilding” in Operation

Фото: Swire Bulk

In 2016, the China Navigation Company (CNCo) fleet was replenished with bulk carriers of a new series. Ships of the handysize class, which comprise this new series, meet the latest ecological and safety standards. Uniteam Marine, CNCo’s partner in Ukraine, employs Ukrainian seafarers on the bulk carriers of the new series.

In terms of global warming, and given the irreversible climatic changes in recent decades, enterprises in various industries have set themselves the task of reducing harmful emissions into the atmosphere. Shipbuilding is not an exception in this regard, since the shipping provides the vast majority of trade operations in the world market, as well as plays a key role in the field of oil and gas production.

The International Maritime Organization initiative on “greening” the sector is supported by the largest shipbuilding companies. Currently, these companies are allocating significant resources to the development of innovative equipment for new types of ships, as well as improving environmental safety in line with maximizing transport effectiveness. Reducing carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxide emissions from ships into the atmosphere, controlling sulphur content in fuel and optimizing energy consumption are now matters of priority.

Балкер China Navigation
Фото: Gordon Allfrey

There are various ways to bring down energy costs while maintaining the speed and operational efficiency. A new ergonomic design of the hulls is being designed, while so-called “clean” engines, which comply with the latest standards for sulphur content and nitrogen oxide emissions, are being installed along with filtration equipment, which can process emissions.

The Swire Group of Companies, which includes CNCo, has actively supported the idea of “green shipbuilding”. In 2014, CNCo ordered four ships of the innovative Imabari 38 series from the Japanese company Imabari Shipbuilding. As for the previous B.Delta 39 series, which was constructed by the Finnish company Deltamarin at the Chengxi Shipyard, the new series bulk carriers are characterized by extremely low fuel consumption at the ratio of “one ton per mile”. During the construction, emphasis was placed on energy saving, which is facilitated by the optimized shape of the hull, a special steering unit device and equipment in the main engine with additional systems. In general, CNCo commissioned 28 bulk carriers for the period from 2012 to 2016 under the programme of newly built ships.

J. B. Rae-Smith, the Chief Operating Officer of the Swire Pacific Commercial and Industrial Department, commenting on the output of the first ships of the series, noted: “I don’t understand why many people consider the design of eco-ships as a senseless idea. When implementing the construction program for our B. Delta 39 series ships, we took into consideration all relevant aspects. As a result, our newly built ships produced 20% more bollard pull with the same power of engines compared to the ships built 20 years ago. Implementation of innovative solutions in the design of propulsion systems and development of the hull design justifies itself and gives an effective result”.

Балкер China Navigation
Фото: tubaman

In the autumn of 2016, the fourth ship of the Imabari 38 series, named Tunsin, was launched. Like the first three bulk carriers of this series, named Taiyuan, Tientsin and Tsingtao, which were launched between July and October 2016, the vessel was named in honour of CNCo’s history, since its first vessels passed through the Yangtze River in 1872. James Woodrow, the Managing Director of CNCo, said at the solemn launch ceremony: “Completion of the CNCo’s four-year program of newly build ships is an important milestone for the Company. We are firmly convinced that four new ships will play a key role in the future of the Company. We are also confident that the new bulk carriers, like our ships of B.Delta 39 series, will become the standard for the handysize sector in the coming years”.

The Swire Group of Companies is expanding its presence in the Pacific and Atlantic Ocean basins by increasing a fleet of ecological and modern vessels. Meanwhile, Ukrainian seafarers, employedon ships belonging to the Swire Structural Division of CNCo, will find new perspectives.