In recent weeks, Baleària has increased the consumption of natural gas on its ten dual-engined ships to one hundred percent. The shipping company estimates that this will allow it to stop emitting around 80,000 tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere between June 1st and the end of the year. In October 2021, in order to avoid becoming less competitive, the shipping company continued to use this cleaner energy only on port entries, approaches and stays.
It should be noted that, despite the temporary reduction in the use of gas due to the adverse circumstances, Baleària maintained its commitment to this fuel, which enables CO2 emissions to be reduced by up to 30%. As a result, Baleària has added two more gas-powered vessels to its fleet, having completed the retrofit of the Hedy Lamarr in 2022, and chartering the Rusadir, a cruise ferry equipped with an electric propulsion system powered by dual natural gas engines, this spring. In addition, Baleària is building the fast ferry Margarita Salas, a second and improved version of the innovative fast ferry Eleanor Roosevelt. In total there are eleven ships with dual engines, versatile technology that allows them to sail under different fuels, including natural gas, an energy that Baleària considers to be the cleanest and most mature currently available for maritime transport. Furthermore, these ships are technologically prepared to consume either 100% biomethane or synthetic methane, as well as green hydrogen mixtures of up to 25%, although these CO2-neutral renewable energies are unfeasible at the moment due to their cost and availability.
Fast ferry Margarita Salas
The Armon shipyard in Gijón has already built 90% of the aluminium structure for the Margarita Salas, Baleària’s second dual-engined fast ferry for passengers and cargo. The ship is scheduled to be launched this autumn and to come into operation next spring on the Barcelona-Ciutadella-Alcúdia route.
This new ship will have the same characteristics as its twin, the Eleanor Roosevelt (123 metres long, 28 metres wide and the capacity to transport 1,200 passengers and 400 vehicles), but it will have a second deck with a lounge seating area at the bow and will double the surface area of the stern terrace with an outdoor bar service. In addition, the Margarita Salas will be 10% more powerful than its sister ship.