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  • Toyota Tsusho Corp.

Toyota Tsusho supplies marine biofuel to car carriers at Port of Nagoya, Japan

The car carrier Toyofuji Maru and bunkering ship Shozan (Photo: Toyota Tsusho Corp.)

Toyota Tsusho Corp. announced Sept. 12 that Toyotsu Energy Corp. supplied marine biodiesel fuel using ship-to-ship bunkering for a car carrier operated by Toyofuji Shipping Co. Ltd. at the Port of Nagoya on July 26 and Aug. 3.

This initiative was implemented as part of the “Study for the Promotion of Carbon-Neutral in Coastal Shipping” included in the fiscal-year 2021 supplementary budget for the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (cabinet decision on Nov. 26).

It was the first attempt in Japan to supply blended fuel that combines low-sulfur C heavy oil and biofuel for coastal trading vessels. Low-sulfur C heavy oil is heavy oil that complies with the regulations of the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL 73/78), produced and marketed by petroleum wholesalers.

In order to prevent the effects of gas emissions from ships on human health and the environment, the revision of the MARPOL 73/78 has tightened the regulation of sulfur content in fuel oil used in all maritime zones from 3.5 mass percent or less to 0.5 mass percent or less since Jan. 1, 2020.


The Japanese government has announced that it will reduce greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions by 46 percent compared to the 2013 level by 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. The target for GHG-emission reduction in the coastal shipping sector by 2030 is a reduction of approximately 17 percent compared to the 2013 level (approximately 1.81 million metric tons).

The government is promoting the conversion of marine fuels from heavy and light oil, which are petroleum-derived, to alternative fuels. Although there are expectations for ships to use hydrogen and ammonia in the medium to long term, due to accompanying requirements such as expensive investments and technological development, biofuel is currently regarded as a viable prospect for carbon-neutral fuel.

About this project

The Toyota Tsusho Group has been a leading force in the shift to alternative fuels for ships using biofuels. Starting with the first biofuel-operation trial at the Port of Singapore in April 2021, the group also supplied biofuels to oceangoing ships at the port in June 2021.

In April this year, the group conducted the trial for a tugboat operating within a port for the first time in Japan.

This time, the group conducted a biofuel-supply trial for domestic car carriers at the Port of Nagoya, which handles the largest volume of goods in Japan, in order to study the effectiveness of biofuel and decarbonize coastal shipping.

The biofuel that was supplied this time was derived partially from waste cooking oil collected from Toyota Group and Toyota Tsusho Group companies in Japan through cooperation between Toyota Tsusho and Daiseki Eco. Solution Co. Ltd.

This initiative also contributes to a circular economy through the establishment of a supply chain with local production for local consumption. Establishing a domestic supply chain and regularly using biofuels, which are decarbonized fuels that can be used directly in ships’ existing internal combustion engines, will contribute to the promotion of carbon neutrality in the maritime transportation industry.

The Toyota Tsusho Group will continue to contribute toward the transition to a carbon-neutral society by accelerating businesses contributing to the reduction of GHG emissions through the industrial lifecycle and promoting initiatives toward carbon neutrality.



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