The MARITIME LNG PLATTFORM e.V., the German national LNG initiative, is an interest coalition of more than 80 national and international industrial and shipping companies, port authorities and initiatives aimed at creating a cleaner and more sustainable shipping sector through the use of LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) and the significant reduction of emissions, such as SOx, NOx, CO2 and particulate matter (PM). The MARITIME LNG PLATTFORM e. V is focused on providing information and research and is committed to the establishment of framework conditions that enable a timely introduction of LNG to the market. At the same time, the platform focuses on the interface with road transport.
In addition, the objectives of the platform include the promotion of water-side LNG-based power supply for freight ships and cruise liners as well as sustainable energy and mobility concepts centred on the use of LNG for water and land transport in port cities. According to the WHO, fine dust particles are the main reason for emission-related deaths worldwide – and shipping is a major factor in producing emissions in coastal regions. LNG is an eco-friendly alternative for shipping and massively reduces fine dust particles pollution as compared to petroleum-based fuels.
Based on the Dutch model (www.nationaallngplatform.nl) and in co-operation with the Dutch platform, the MARTIME LNG PLATTFORM (with offices in Hamburg and Berlin) pushes for the market introduction of LNG as an environmentally-friendly fuel in Germany and beyond. One of its key objectives is bringing together relevant national and international expertise as well as representing LNG related interests of the maritime sector in the political sphere both at national and EU level: the cornerstones of our work involve pro-active public affairs and PR work and highly targeted special events providing information and research and presenting innovative solutions in co-operation with existing initiatives and in dialogue with decision-makers in Berlin and Brussels.
In January 2015, the German Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure asked the platform to provide politicians with a forward strategy for LNG in Germany as a basis for future decisions and as part of the Federal Government´s Mobility and Fuel Strategy and the implementation of the EU Directive “Clean Power for Transport”.
The platform is also a member of the European Sustainable Shipping Forum (ESSF) which makes a key contribution to the establishment of uniform standards: this primarily involves a transfer of expertise to smaller ports as generally only representatives of bigger German ports attend the meetings of the ESSF. The Platform´s international partners and members are also actively involved.
- Implementation of uniform standards, based on international best practice
- Standardisation and swift introduction of an internationally recognised approval process in German sea and inland ports, also based on the best international practice
- Improving the framework conditions of LNG-generated power supply of ships
- Clear standards for establishing LNG infrastructure: political decision-makers and relevant public authorities should define clear standards to enable the development of an LNG infrastructure without investment barriers
- The public sector as “First Mover”: the public sector at all levels uses more than 700 ships and can fulfil an important role as “first mover” by changing procurement conditions accordingly
- Extending education and training: training and further education activities for ships´ crews, port employees and terminal staff enable a professional and qualified work environment for the use of LNG
- Extension of the SECA zone to the Mediterranean Sea to allow for a level-playing field for all European shipping companies
- Increase of the acceptance of LNG among the public and relevant trade audiences – whilst reducing unfounded prejudices and fears
- Widening the debate about the sustainability of goods and their logistics chains
The platform's activities are guided by a specific roadmap:
- In 5 years - the operation of at least 50 ships in German ports using LNG
- In 5 years - at least 5 ports in Germany that supply LNG to the shipping sector
- In 3 years – sea-based LNG power supply during port stays of at least 250 ships per annum
- The specific and measurable reduction of SOx, NOx, CO2 and particulate matter as a result of above measures