Cepsa Supplies its New, More Sustainable Marine Fuels to the Canary Islands for the First Time

22 Nov 2019

    • Having been planned months ago to meet the challenges of IMO 2020, Cepsa is now implementing the changes required by the International Maritime Organization

In the port of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Cepsa has just completed its first delivery of Very Low Sulphur Fuel Oil (VLSFO 0.5%) to the Canary Islands, delivering more than 5500 tons to two ships moored at the Dique del Este dock and the cruise terminal. On top of that, the energy company will this weekend make its first delivery of VLSFO to the Port of Las Palmas, Gran Canaria, delivering a total of 2750 tons to two ships.

Thanks to years of experience in this field, Cepsa has been ready for months in advance for what is one of the greatest changes and greatest challenges in the history of the shipping business: The new International Maritime Organization (IMO) regulation for marine fuels. IMO 2020, as it's otherwise known, will enter into force on January 1, 2020, and will require vessels to use fuels with a maximum sulphur content of 0.5%.

Carlos Giner, Director of Cepsa's bunker business, believes that "the talent pool at Cepsa makes us an innovative company and one that never stops investing in technological processes. All of this, combined with over 90 years of experience in refining and bunkering, makes us proud of the recognition we get from our customers." 

"We are so pleased to have been able to successfully fulfil our first orders for sustainable marine fuel in the Canary Islands. It's something we've been prepared for months in advance. Cepsa defines itself as providing fuel for every situation, every customer, and once again we have stayed true to this — the regulatory changes come into play in January, so we are ahead of the game," says Giner.

As one of the biggest players in marine fuel supply, Cepsa's preparation for these changes has been years in the making. Work at its Research Center and major investment in its refineries have put it ahead of the curve. 

This is how Cepsa has been able to supply the new high quality, highly reliable VLSFO 0.5% before the regulations come into force. When that day does come, Cepsa will also deliver distillates, Marine Gas Oil (MGO) and traditional fuel oil 3.5% (RMG 380), thereby meeting the needs of all its customers, including those who choose to install mechanisms in their ships to neutralize emissions (scrubbers) rather than using 0.5% fuels.

The Advantages of a High-Quality, Self-Manufactured Fuel

Cepsa manufactures VLSFO 0.5% in its own refineries from specific channels of its crude oil distillation process, which distinguishes it from other fuels on the market that are produced by mixing various finished products, and which may therefore be more unstable.

Cepsa estimates that it will produce 2 million tons of VLSFO 0.5% in 2020. The energy company has vast experience in the marine fuel sector. It all began in 1930 with the construction of the Tenerife Refinery, and Cepsa now has a strong presence in more than 60 ports in Spain, Gibraltar and Panama, among other countries, and sells more than 6 million tons every year.

In the Canary Islands, the Cepsa bunker area has its own storage facility in the Ports of Santa Cruz de Tenerife and Las Palmas, Gran Canaria, as well as the capacity to supply marine fuels to all other ports in the Archipelago by means of tankers.

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