OOCL Doesn't Rule Out Fitting Scrubbers to Giant New Boxships

The OOCL Hong Kong is currently one of the largest ships the company operates. Image Credit: OOCL

The five new giant container ships ordered by Hong Kong-based shipping company OOCL are expected to run on very low sulfur fuel oil (VLSFO), but the company says it may still consider installing scrubbers on them.

On Wednesday the company announced it had ordered five new ships with cargo capacity of 23,000 twenty-foot equivalent units, making them among the largest in the world upon their delivery from 2023.

“For these vessels specifically, the base case is that we will simply use VLSFO,” a spokeswoman for the company told Ship & Bunker by email Thursday.

“However, we will continue to monitor the environmental and operational efficiency of scrubber technology, as well as the price difference between VLSFO and heavy fuel oil.

“The design for these ultra-large vessels is flexible enough to accommodate a decision to add scrubber during the long construction period, if we choose to do so.”

The company has also considered LNG and other alternative fuels while making this vessel order, the spokeswoman said.

“Over the last two years, there has been much discussion in the industry on various options such as the use of low sulfur fuel, scrubbers, and LNG.

“We have been paying very close attention to these discussions and will continue to monitor market trends and industry developments towards our decision for the most practical and competitive options for the new buildings that would be compatible with our fleet and operations over the long term.”

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