BHP, as part of its goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across its operations, has released the world’s first bulk carrier tender for LNG-fuelled transport for up to 27 Mt of its iron ore.
The company said: “Introducing LNG-fuelled ships into BHP’s maritime supply chain will eliminate nitrogen oxide (NOx) and sulphur oxide (SOx) emissions and significantly reduce CO2 emissions along the busiest bulk transport route globally.”
BHP, as part of its greenhouse gas emission reduction plans, recently signed a memorandum of understanding with Mitsubishi Development to work together in the pursuit of emissions reductions, including from the life-cycle use of marketed products.
Rashpal Bhatti, Vice President, Maritime and Supply Chain Excellence, BHP, said emissions resulting from the transportation and distribution of the company’s products represented a material source of its value chain emissions (Scope 3).
“We recognise we have a stewardship role, working with our customers, suppliers and others to influence emissions reductions across the full life cycle of our products,” Bhatti said. “Through this tender, we are seeking potential partners who share our ambition of lowering emissions to the maritime supply chain.”
The tender is open to a select group of industry leaders, from ship owners, banks and LNG fuel network providers, BHP said. “As well as LNG-fuelled transport for up to 10% of its iron ore, the tender seeks other innovative solutions that can lower greenhouse gas emissions and increase productivity from BHP’s freight requirements.”
Bhatti added: “We are fully supportive of the International Maritime Organisation’s (IMO) decision to impose lower limits on sulphur levels in marine fuels.
“While LNG may not be the sustainable homogenous fuel of choice for a zero carbon future, we are not prepared to wait for a 100% compliant solution if we know that, together with our partners, we can make significant progress now.
“This new tender adds to the work BHP is doing with customers, suppliers and parties along our value chain to influence emissions reductions from the transport and use of our products.”
The IMO ruled from January 1, 2020, that the marine sector will have to reduce sulphur emissions by over 80% by switching to lower sulphur fuels, with the current maximum fuel oil sulphur limit of 3.5 weight percent (wt%) falling to 0.5 wt%.
As well as investments in emerging technologies, BHP sets greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets for its operations, builds the resilience of its operations and communities to the physical impacts of climate change, and works across sectors to strengthen the global policy and market response, the company said.