UK-based ferry operator Red Funnel is trialing the use of renewable diesel blends on its ro-pax (roll on/roll off passenger) fleet of ships which operate between Southampton and the Isle of Wight. The aim is to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
The cross-Solent (the strait that separates the Isle of Wight from the mainland of England) ferry company has teamed up with Green Biofuels, to trial Green D+ biofuel with varying amounts of low-sulfur Marine Gas Oil, to power the main engines and on-board generators.
Green D+ fuel is formulated by Green Biofuels by using a patented performance additive based on cerium oxide with HVO (Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil) renewable diesel. The HVO is produced by Neste in Europe from a variety of waste and residue materials (i.e. used cooking oil and waste fats from the food processing industry) as well as plant oils (such as Palm Oil and Rapeseed Oil). The waste oil is recycled back into fuel, eliminating the dangers of inefficient and often dangerous disposal or its re-use in the food chain.
The trial use of biofuels is one of a number of new initiatives Red Funnel is taking to significantly reduce its environmental footprint. Unlike other alternative energy sources, switching to biofuel incurs no major infrastructure changes and we are confident that the trial will deliver a reduction in SOx and NOx emissions.—Mark Slawson, Red Funnel’s Fleet and Technical Director