Miami, Mar. 13 - The Port of Miami (Florida, USA) supplied for the first time in its history liquefied natural gas (LNG) as fuel to a cargo ship that docked this weekend at its terminals, PortMiami reported Monday.
The 1,000-foot (305-meter) cargo ship "Seaboard Blue" refueled this Sunday at PortMiami and became the first container ship to receive this alternative fuel -LNG- at this port, considered the gateway to the Americas and one of the most important in the world.
Shell Oil used one of its Q4000 fuel barges to fill the "Seaboard Blue's" tank with LNG prior to its maiden sailing to Honduras and Guatemala.
This container cargo vessel, which can sail on both diesel fuel and LNG, was the "first of its kind in the world" to perform this conversion.
The adoption by Seabord Marine, which owns the vessel, "of greener fuel sources is exemplary and a significant step toward our goal of keeping Miami-Dade a county at the forefront of sustainability," said Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava.
Levine Cava noted that "these investments continue to position PortMiami as an industry leader and help ensure that our community is prepared for the future."
For his part, Eddie Gonzalez, president and CEO of Seabord Marine Company, noted that the "Seaboard Blue" is a "key new component to Seaboard's fleet transformation."
"The recent purchase of this LNG-powered vessel not only demonstrates Seaboard Marine's continued commitment to sustainability, but also to providing reliable service to our customers," he added.
PortMiami is Miami-Dade County's second largest economic engine, contributing $43 billion annually to the local economy and supporting more than 334,500 jobs in South Florida.
Last year, more than 9 million tons of cargo passed through the port, where more than $1 billion worth of infrastructure improvements have been made, including increasing the depth of the channel to 52 feet (almost 16 meters) and daily rail service at the pier.