With new, more stringent sulphur oxide (SOx) emission regulations due to take effect January 2015, Finnlines has ordered Wärtsilä Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems for six of its Baltic and North Sea fleet of vessels, Wärtsilä said. By selecting the scrubber systems, Wärtsilä said the vessels will be able to operate in compliance with the new environmental regulations while continuing to operate on heavy fuel oil. The systems will also operate in compliance with the water discharge criteria set by regulators.
The Finnlines order, received in May 2014, calls for one Wärtsilä scrubber system for each of the six vessels, with the two main engines on each vessel being connected to a single integrated scrubber system. Both concept design and basic design engineering services are included as needed for plan approval by Class and Flag notations. The Wärtsilä equipment will be delivered during November and December of this year. Furthermore, Wärtsilä will support Finnlines during the installation phase by providing technical advice.
"Environmental compliance and cost efficient operations are key factors in the success of Finnlines. The installation of Wärtsilä scrubber systems on our recent series of six modern Ro-Ro vessels is a major step in the implementation of our strategy. The extensive experience that Wärtsilä has in this area, together with the retrofit services the company can provide, will greatly help us during the engineering and installation phases of this programme," says Emanuele Grimaldi, President and CEO, Finnlines Plc.
"The new SOx emission regulations will notably reduce the marine industry's environmental impact on the Baltic and the North Sea (including English Channel). The Wärtsilä Exhaust Gas Cleaning Systems represent a very viable retrofit option that enables owners and operators to comply with this legislation. We have a very strong track record and considerable know-how in integrating scrubber systems into existing vessel structures and machinery, and look forward to working with Finnlines on this important project," says Juha Kytölä, Vice President Environmental Solutions, Wärtsilä.
The Wärtsilä Open Loop Scrubber Systems that have been selected for this application utilize seawater to remove the SOx from the vessel's exhaust. Chemicals are not required since the natural alkalinity of seawater neutralizes the acid created by the reaction of the SOx with water.
Wärtsilä claims to be the market leader in scrubber systems for the marine sector with 100 units installed or on order for 51 vessels. Wärtsilä was also the first manufacturer to have been awarded the International Maritime Organization's (IMO) certificate for exhaust gas cleaning systems by the classification societies Det Norske Veritas, Germanischer Lloyd, and Bureau Veritas.
Finnlines is one of the largest North-European liner shipping companies, providing sea transport services mainly in the Baltic and the North Sea. The company is part of the Grimaldi Group, one of the world's largest operators of Ro-Ro vessels and the largest operator of the Motorways of the Sea in Europe for both passengers and freight.