The centre is planning to propose Liquefied natural gas (LNG) dispensing stations as an interim measure for trucks inside ports by using floating storage units (FSU). The FSU unit is the old ship anchored close to the port with the natural gas storage unit. Already four major ports Chennai, Cochin, Kamarajar (Ennore) port and Deendayal Port have the facility of LNG terminals nearby and suggestions have been made for nine major ports that come under the administrative control of the shipping ministry.
As per the proposal, the FSU will allow flexibility of using the same ship as an LNG carrier for the initial period when gas send-outs are low. This kind of setup has low capital investment and saves LNG chartering costs for the initial years.
In case more LNG trucks are deployed there will be an increase of gas consumption at these ports, then from FSU, a land-based terminal is easy by installing a tank and additional regasification capacity. The same kind of strategy has been adopted in many countries like the Philippines, Ghana, and Ecuador.
The LNG plan aligns with India’s goal to decarbonize its port under the Harit Sagar Green Port Guidelines 2023 wherein the 4Rs strategy is used for converting waste: Reduce, Reuse, Repurpose and Recycle to attain zero waste discharge from port operations. They also look into the other aspects of the National Green Hydrogen Mission about ports, the development of green hydrogen facilities, LNG bunkering, and offshore wind energy among others.
The Green Port policy allows incentives to fleet owners who willingly adopt Compressed Natural Gas, LNG, electric or green hydrogen-powered trucks as it will help reduce the intensity of emissions at the major ports.