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K Line to manage third Northern Lights CO2 carrier

Northern Lights Two Northern Lights CO2 carriers under construction at Dalian
Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha (K Line) has picked up charters for the third CO2 carrier from oil major-backed CO2 transport company Northern Lights shipping.

Northern Lights has previously granted the charters for two of its 7,500 cu m liquefied CO2 carriers to K Line, leaving the Japanese company responsible for three of the four newbuilds due for delivery to Northern Lights from 2024. The ships are under construction at Dalian Shipbuilding Offshore Company (DSOC) and the first pair are around 75% complete.

The Northern Lights fleet will be engaged transporting liquefied CO2 from producers in Norway, Denmark, and the Netherlands to the Northern Lights’ own receiving terminal in Øygarden, Norway. The CO2 will then be stored permanently in an offshore reservoir.

K Line said it was working on documentation for the new vessels, including a crew training programme, operating manual, and commissioning protocol; it is also working with terminal operators and port authorities. The ships will be operated by K Line LNG Shipping (UK), a subsidiary based in London.

Børre Jacobsen, managing director of Northern Lights, said: “These ships will be shuttling between our customers in Northwest Europe and the Northern Lights’ onshore facilities, each transporting over 400,000 tonnes CO2 annually.”

“We have already set up a dedicated team for CO2 ship management in K Line LNG Shipping (UK) in London for the first and second vessels and believe that the preparation for prior vessels will be further accumulated with the additional vessel in the fleet. Having the experience of building up the team and operational procedure, we are determined to contribute to the world’s first CCS project by Northern Lights,” said Yukikazu Myochin, president and CEO of K Line.

Chartering details for the fourth vessel in the fleet remain to be announced. The vessel was ordered in December 2023. “The recent contracts to build and operate the third and fourth ships signify an increase in Northern Lights’ shipping capacity and reinforce our pioneering role in CO2 transport”, said Jacobsen.

Northern Lights is owned by Equinor, Shell, and TotalEnergies and has support from the Norwegian Government. The first phase of its development will have a CO2 storage capacity of 1.5 million tonnes per annum under the Longship project.