Construction has started on the first two liquefied natural gas (LNG)-powered, combination container – roll- on/roll-off (ConRo) ‘Commitment Class’ ships for Crowley’s Puerto Rico/Caribbean liner services.
The 219.5 m long, 32.3 m beam and 10 m draught vessels have been designed to maximise the carriage of containers, having a cargo capacity of approximately 2,400 teu, with additional space for nearly 400 vehicles in an enclosed ro/ro deck. The main propulsion and auxiliary engines will be fuelled by LNG.
To be named El Coquiì (ko-kee) and Taiìno (tahy-noh), they will replace Crowley’s towed triple-deck barge fleet; delivery is scheduled for Q2 and Q4 2017 respectively. Powered by LNG, the vessels will set a new standard, netting a 100% reduction in sulphur oxide (SOx) and particulate matter (PM), along with a 92% reduction in nitrogen oxide (NOx), according to the company.
LNG also has the ability to significantly reduce carbon dioxide (CO2), a contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, as compared with conventional fossil fuels. Designing, building and operating LNG- powered vessels is very much in line with Crowley’s overall ‘EcoStewardship’ positioning and growth strategy.
“We have waited with great anticipation for the Commitment Class build programme to start,” said John Hourihan, senior vice president and general manager, Puerto Rico/Caribbean liner services. “These new ships will embody superior technology and construction and we are anxious to get them into service for our partners in Puerto Rico.”