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GNF and Baleària develop LNG engine

LNG Industry,

Gas Natural Fenosa and Baleària have signed an agreement to develop the first liquefied natural gas engine for passenger vessels in Spain.

The project will enable the development and installation of natural gas fuelled auxiliary motors in the maritime domain, in order to reduce emissions and improve air quality.

The agreement is part of the collaboration between the two companies and the Port of Barcelona, the Generalitat de Catalunya and the city of Barcelona.

The CEO of GNF’s Energy Retail Business, Daniel Lopez Jorda and Baleària’s President, Adolfo Utor, signed the agreement to promote the development and installation of an LNG engine and gas tank in the ferry Abel Matutes.

The Abel Matutes ferry.

GNF added that the agreement provides for the future development of infrastructure to deliver piped natural gas to the Port of Barcelona.


Commenting on the agreement, Daniel Lopez Jorda stated: "The partnership with Baleària [enables] the possibility of developing a new technology and a firm commitment to innovation, expanding our horizons […] in the port and maritime sector. With this joint natural gas [agreement, we] continue to push to achieve improved urban air quality in the vicinity of the metropolitan area of Barcelona, Puerto de Barcelona and the Port of Palma.”

President of Baleària, Adolfo Utor, added: "It is an important milestone that will allow us to be pioneers in the use of gas in ferries and [over] time, be[come] more sustainable." Utor reiterated the commitment of the shipping industry to using gas, adding that "in addition to reducing CO2 emissions [by] 40%, [the agreement] also allows us to reduce fuel costs."

Daniel Lopez Jorda (left) with Adolfo Utor.

Project timeline

Work is planned to commence in early 2015, which would include the installation of the gas engine and a 30 m3 LNG auxiliary tank on the deck of the vessel. The project also includes installing a gas processing plant on the upper deck of the ferry.

Testing and commissioning are expected to be underway by the end of 2015. The ferry, which has a length of 190 m, has a capacity for 900 people.

Adapted from press release by Katie Woodward

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