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  • FinCo Group

VT Group, FinCo complete 9-month pilot use of 100% biodiesel as marine fuel

From left, Beumer and van der Made aboard the MTS Vlissingen (Photo: FinCo Group)

Over the past nine months, Dutch maritime logistics company VT Group joined forces with FinCo Group, an independent supplier of sustainable-energy solutions, to pilot the use of 100 percent fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) biodiesel on VT Group’s ship MTS Vlissingen.

FinCo Group stated that both companies want to lead the way in the field of sustainability and demonstrate the possibilities of biodiesel in inland shipping.

For this pilot, VT Group, in consultation with FinCo, adjusted the conditioning of the fuel-supply system on the ship.

FinCo then supplied the required 100 percent FAME, which was partly purchased from Argent Energy, a biodiesel producer with manufacturing facilities in the U.K. and the Netherlands.

FAME is biodiesel that is produced from animal and vegetable residual fats or used cooking oil and delivers a CO2 reduction of up to 89 percent.

During this trial period, both parties have collected “a lot of useful data and gained technical knowledge about the operational use of this product under various circumstances,” FinCo Group stated. “With that valuable information, VT Group and FinCo Group can now move forward together.”

Claudia Beumer, the global account manager for VT Group, said, “We are satisfied. Even in this pilot set-up on the MTS Vlissingen, no technically unsolvable situations have occurred. FAME is a beautiful biodiesel that, with minimal technical adjustments, can be used directly in inland shipping. VT now wants to structurally use FAME as [marine biofuel] and work towards greening the VT fleet, together with FinCo.”

Both FinCo and VT Group have expressed their intention to continue the cooperation.

Alex van der Made, FinCo Group’s supply manager, added, “As an independent supplier of a broad portfolio of (bio)fuels, FinCo is as close as possible to its most important customers. In recent years, with our infrastructure and experience with sustainable-energy carriers, we have created a unique market position to supply inland shipping with sustainable fuels. We look forward to supporting VT Group in achieving their sustainability goals in the future.”

After the MTS Vlissingen, VT Group wants to convert the MTS Vorstenbosch, the largest bunker vessel in the world, to FAME.

After that, other ships in the fleet can also switch to biodiesel.

These ships will start with a lower blend, where a CO2 reduction can be achieved immediately without the necessary adjustments.

In the coming years, the ships will be made technically ready one by one in order to make the transition to 100 percent FAME.



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