MSC Reaches Long-Term LNG Cooperation Deal

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MSC Group’s Cruise Division and Gasum have partnered to achieve a 2050 net-zero greenhouse gas emissions goal. The two companies also agreed upon the supply of LNG for the upcoming MSC Euribia.

Liquefied Natural Gas, MSC Cruises, and Net-Zero Greenhouse Gas Emissions

It’s just been announced that Switzerland’s MSC Group’s Cruise Division has partnered with Sweden’s Gasum to achieve the company’s (MSC Cruises’) 2050 net-zero greenhouse gas emissions goal. 

The two companies have signed a long-term agreement for the supply of liquefied natural gas (LNG) and renewable e-LNG for MSC Cruises’ newest flagship, the 181,541-ton MSC Euribia, which recently entered service and is now sailing on its inaugural cruises around Europe.

The collaboration between MSC Cruises and Gasum is outlined in a signed Letter of Intent (LOI). The LOI focuses on the supply of synthetic e-LNG, which is produced by using renewable energy sources.

The LNG-powered 19-deck MSC Euribia—featuring 2,419 cabins with an impressive capacity for 6,334 guests—is being touted as the cruise line’s most energy-efficient vessel to date.

MSC Euribia LNG
MSC Euribia LNG (Photo Courtesy: MSC Cruises)

The LNG fuel that will power MSC Euribia also signals the company’s ongoing efforts to hit net zero emissions by 2050. MSC Cruises hopes to see some meaningful emissions reductions by 2026 as well.

We are delighted to be partnering with Gasum on our journey to net zero greenhouse gas emissions,” MSC Cruises’ Vice President of Sustainability Linden Coppell remarked.

“Securing a reliable supply of LNG and e-LNG is of critical importance to our decarbonization efforts, and the LOI and long-term agreement that we have announced today are significant steps on that journey. Partnering with Gasum will enable us to access new and cleaner fuels needed to make net zero cruising a reality,” Linden added.

By utilizing liquefied natural gas (LNG), MSC Cruises effectively mitigates sulfur oxide and particle emissions, substantially decreases nitrogen oxide emissions, and significantly minimizes greenhouse gas emissions overall. 

Furthermore, the incorporation of LNG technology enables MSC Cruises to seamlessly transition to fully renewable options like liquefied biogas (bio-LNG) or synthetic gas (e-LNG), thereby achieving greenhouse gas emissions reductions of up to a whopping 100 percent.

MSC Euribia Cruise Ship
MSC Euribia Cruise Ship (Photo Credit: Studio Porto Sabbia)

Gasum’s procurement of liquefied biogas has already helped with MSC Euribia’s groundbreaking achievement during the first-ever net-zero greenhouse gas emissions voyage. 

The vessel, sailing from Saint-Nazaire, France to Copenhagen, Denmark, successfully demonstrated the feasibility of emissions-neutral cruising. MSC Euribia has the ability to switch over to liquefied biogas, or bio-LNG, which is a renewable fuel derived from organic waste materials.

During the four-day journey, MSC Euribia (which will also feature a massive shopping center) employed bio-LNG, utilizing a mass-balance approach that maximizes the environmental efficiency of renewable biogas delivery.

LNG Versus e-LNG

LNG and e-LNG are both liquefied gases used for diverse applications—like powering massive cruise ships. These two fuels differ in production methods and environmental impact. LNG is primarily obtained by cooling natural gas, reducing its volume for convenient storage and transportation. 

As already mentioned, LNG lowers emissions of sulfur oxides, particulate matter, nitrogen oxides, and other greenhouse gases compared to traditional fuels.

Read Also: LNG Cruise Ship – Top Pros and Cons

In contrast, e-LNG is produced by using renewable energy sources like wind or solar power, generating electricity to convert water and CO2 into synthetic natural gas. 

By using renewable energy sources, e-LNG has the potential for even lower emissions (compared to LNG), as it’s created through renewable energy. E-LNG provides a practical pathway forward for the cruise industry as it works to decarbonize maritime and land transportation.

Gasum hopes to supply seven terawatt hours (a terawatt hour, or TWh, is a unit of energy equal to one trillion watt-hours) of renewable gas per year by 2027, which in turn should lead to an annual reduction of 1.8 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions for the company’s renewable gas customers. 

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