Paul Melles, managing director at Doeksen (Image: Rederij Doeksen)
The environmental requirements of operating in the Wadden Sea – a Unesco World Heritage Site – meant that sustainability had been a focus for Doeksen throughout the project, managing director Paul Melles told The Motorship.
This focus influenced the choice of catamaran hull design, which offered efficiency advantages compared with a conventional hull design in the shallow waters of the Wadden Sea, managing director Paul Melles told The Motorship.
The choice of LNG as fuel for the Willem Barentsz and its sister ship Willem de Vlamingh was an obvious choice for Doeksen, Melles added. But the choice of LNG was dependent on ensuring availability from the port of Harlingen. Melles recognised the help provided by NGOs such as the National LNG Platform in during the initial stages of obtaining permits for LNG bunkering at Harlingen. Supplier Titan LNG will provide truck-to-ship bunkering for the two vessels, transporting supplies from Rotterdam.
The choice was also based on longer term considerations, Melles said. LNG would be a transition fuel until 2040 or 2050, adding that none of the other alternative fuels would be available before the late 2030s. Doeksen was still looking at ways to reduce CO2 emissions from its vessels in due course. “Our strategy is to promote the production of bio LNG or LBG in our region to gradually replace our use of fossil LNG with LBG.”