ZVT Radio: Furetank

When our industry features in the media, it is often through stories about us discharging oil into the sea and about black birds. No one sees that we perform huge work in transport with, in fact, very little environmental impact, says Lars Höglund, Furetank, one of the participants in the Joint Industy Project LNG CONV. Listen to the interview in Swedish or read the English translation.

Lars Höglund, Furetank

Objective: Converting an existing vessel to dual-fuel (focus LNG) and closely following the different stages from technology implementation at the yard via bunkering to operational start.

Participants: Furetank, PonPower, MAK, FKAB, Preem, Bureau Veritas, Oresund Drydocks, SSA, SSPA

Lars Höglund, Furetank.  Which JIP is your organisation part of? 

- One of our vessels is included in LNG Conversion. 

Which other organisations are participating in this project?

- This JIP includes the certification company that was involved in the classification of the ship when it was built, Bureau Veritas, and then there is the designer, Naval Architects FKAB, Uddevalla, and Preem, the oil company, and Öresund Drydocks are also participating in this. 

That is a lot? 

- Yes, there are quite a few. 

What do you consider to be the advantages of working with JIP LNG-CONV?

- It is nice to be involved in new technology that we have not used before and because it is positive for the environment. Our company has always tried to be among the forerunners in environmental change. We ordered our first double hull vessel already in 1988 and we were one of the first to have tankers with double hulls. So this is an ongoing process for us and an interest, and we want to be involved in this and we believe that because we up here are dealing with a slightly higher level of costs, in order for us to succeed in the market we need to be able to offer something a little bit better. 

What do you consider to be great about being involved in a JIP? 

- Well, it is that there are many of us working to achieve a common goal, and it is inspiring when everyone wants the same thing, and how we are going to solve these problems. And of course the hope is that these JIP:s are realised and the goal is achieved. That is the great hope and the driving force. 

What do you see as the strength of being involved in this development?

- As a privately-owned, family company one hopes that the interest in technical matters will lead to a deal in the long run, and of course that is the driving force. 

So it is a case of both business and environmental thinking?

- Both business and environmental thinking. And we want to be part of this development and see what it is and not stand around saying no, but really try to make an effort to achieve something. 

What do you consider to be the advantages, if any, of being part of a project that is carried out using ZVT?

- The fact that the organisation gets information early on about what is happening. That we are visible. We, the partners in the JIP:s, we are named and hopefully this gives a bit of a boost to our brand and makes us visible to politicians and makes our presence known. And in an industry that is in decline in Sweden and is not so visible, it has been inspiring and good to see that we can do something for the environment and this is noticed. And perhaps it helps us in terms of other shipping policies. 

In what way? 

- Maybe it does … in some way show that we are not environmental bad guys, as we are often portrayed in the media. And when our industry features in the media, it is often through stories about us discharging oil into the sea and about black birds. And no one sees that we perform huge work in transport with, in fact, very little environmental impact. 

In what way is it good to get information early on about everything that is happening in shipping, from your point of view? 

- Well, it means that you have early input into what is going on. Every day we are taking decisions on what ships should look like and we are designing ships for the future. What should the next generation of ships look like? So of course it is good to have information early on so that we can take this into consideration. 

Do you feel that there has already been some information that you have really benefited from? 

- Yes, you could say that. Because we are involved in the Conversion project via the vessel Fure West. When we built this ship in 2006 it was the first time we had heard that perhaps we would be using LNG in future. So we spoke with MAK so that we could have an engine that was designed specifically for this, and that is why Fure West is included. So, that is a decision that was taken nearly 10 years ago that means implementation is now possible. 

You can see that participation really makes a difference? 

- Yes, and had we not listened to this type of information early on, we would not have had a suitable vessel for this project today. 

You are also one of the representatives for the Shipowners’ Association in ZVTREF; what do you think is the most important aspect of holding these meetings? 

- When we were included … in the reference group we have access to decision makers. They sit around the table and that gives us the chance to relay what we have be discussing in the JIP:s and in Zero Vision Tool directly to them and they get a way of contacting us so that we can perhaps answer questions which if they were to go via a lot of officials would lose some of the clarity of the answers. 

You have direct access to the decision makers?

- Yes, and it is nice to see that this Zero Vision Tool platform and the reference group are today often used by the politicians and it gives us good “cred” that this is a good way of working to provide them with information. 

So it is working? 

- I think so. 

Thank you very much.