MOL Group Bunkering Vessel Successfully Operated Using Biodiesel Fuel

Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd. (MOL) announced that the bunkering vessel Techno Star, owned and operated by its group company MOL Techno-Trade, Ltd. (MOL Tech) has been successfully operated using biodiesel fuel (BDF) supplied by Aburatou Shoji K.K.

In addition, Nippon Kaiji Kyokai (Class NK) certified that nitrogen-oxygen (NOx) emissions from the vessel during BDF combustion are within emissions limits set by international regulations including the MARPOL Treaty. This is the first certification by Class NK in Japan.

BDF used for the vessel as fuel is fatty acid methyl ester generated through transesterification (Note 1) of collected waste cooking oil with methanol.

Techno Star - Bunkering vessel with a double-bottom,double-hull structure, delivered in 2017
Image Credits:

BDF is a biomass energy resource, which exhausts carbon dioxide (CO2) during combustion, but the plants that provide its raw material absorb CO2 and reproduce biomass, so CO2 emissions during combustion can be reduced. BDF supplied for the vessel is used by increasing mixing ratio with Class A heavy fuel to more than 30% first time in Japan, which is expected to reduce CO2 emissions by 25-30%.

The MOL Group set a target of achieving net zero GHG emissions by 2050 in “MOL Group Environmental Vision 2.1” (Fig.1) announced in June 2021.


It calls for an initiative on “Adoption of Clean Alternative Fuels” (Fig. 2) to achieve this target, positioning biomass as an effective alternative to fossil fuels. The group works continually not only to reduce GHG emissions from its own operations, but also to meet the demands by customers and society at large to protect the global environment.

(Fig. 1) MOL Group Environmental Vision 2.1


Initiatives to reduce our GHG Emissions
Click Image To Enlarge

(Note 1)
Glycerin and fatty acids are separated from oils and fats through a reaction with methanol to generate fatty acid methyl ester, in which fatty acids and methanol are bonded.

ethanol exchange reaction
Image Credits: Aburatou Shoji website


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