Wespac Midstream to Build First LNG Bunker Barge in North America
On Wednesday, WesPac Midstream (WesPac), a provider of energy infrastructure and LNG solutions, and its affiliate Clean Marine Energy (CME), a global facilitator of Emission Control Area (ECA) compliance solutions, announced a construction contract with Conrad Orange Shipyard to build the first dedicated LNG bunker barge for the marine market in North America. The barge will be an important supply chain component in ongoing efforts to reduce the environmental impact of maritime activity through the conversion of ships to LNG. The first barge is expected to be delivered in early 2016 and planned to initially be deployed in Tacoma, Washington, to service ship owner Totem Ocean’s “Orca class” vessels, in addition to other LNG-powered vessels. Subsequently, the barge will be relocated to Jacksonville, Florida, to serve TOTE’s “Marlin class” container vessels and other LNG-powered vessels in the Port of Jacksonville.
This initial bunker barge for TOTE is part of the WesPac/CME plan to provide an integrated LNG solution for engine conversion, infrastructure, supply, and delivery logistics to the shipping industry. As more U.S. Jones Act ship owners and operators seek to meet stringent sulfur limits by converting to LNG as a cleaner bunker fuel, WesPac/CME plans to exercise its options with Conrad to construct additional LNG fueling barges to serve other North American ports.