Delayed Glen Sannox may have two-year wait for LNG fuel

MV Glen Sannox – pictured in 2020 - may have to run on diesel fuel until 2025 when new LNG tanks are built. Photograph: Mark F Gibson / Gibson Digital.

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The delayed MV Glen Sannox, which is expected to finally go into service in spring next year, may have a two year wait before she can run on liquefied natural gas (LNG).

Danish company KC LNG won a £5 million contract to construct two underground LNG tanks at Ardrossan and Uig, however, its website confirm they won’t be completed until the ‘beginning of 2025’.

The use of LNG is far less damaging to the environment than diesel but, ironically, it is anticipated the greener fuel will be shipped in from Qatar and brought by road from Kent to Ardrossan where it can be safely stored.

The new MV Glen Sannox will be able to run on duel fuel, diesel and LNG and it is the use of LNG that provides it with its green credentials. These green measures, however, will be rendered useless if the vessel is to use conventional diesel until bunkering facilities can be built in 2025.

Former Scottish Government shipbuilding adviser Luke van Beek told the Sunday Post: ‘Bunkering directly from a road tanker is possible but very slow and risky – LNG combusts if it touches water. My guess is that, until the dedicated bunkering is available, they will run on diesel. It does raise the question as to why the LNG capability needs to be commissioned.’

According to its website, KC LNG said: ‘On March 30, 2020, Scottish ferry owner Caledonian Maritime Assets Ltd placed an order for two innovative liquefied natural gas (LNG) bunkering facilities – designed and delivered by KC LNG. When completed in the beginning of 2025, the facilities will enable two new vessels to be fuelled with the highly responsible fuel, LNG.’

The new bunkering tanks, once installed, will be fully automated and remotely monitored and will have a 150 m3 capacity and a 5-year maintenance agreement.


MV Glen Sannox – pictured in 2020 – may have to run on diesel fuel until 2025 when new LNG tanks are built. Photograph: Mark F Gibson/Gibson Digital. NO_B17LNG01