Ferry Business - Spring/Summer 2019

107 Sheen and his team also had to choose the most suitable fuel source – should the company continue using heavy fuel oil or move to LNG? The Dublin – Cherbourg route falls into the North Sea Emission Control Area, so MARPOL Annex VI applies. Using heavy fuel oil would require the ferry to have equipment for in-line exhaust treatment and scrubbing after- treatment. Furthermore, operators sailing in these areas must purchase more expensive and higher quality fuel oil to comply with regulations that came into force on 1 January 2015 and mandated a reduction in sulphur emissions from 1.0% to 0.1%. Although some ferry operators have moved to LNG, that posed considerable issues for Irish Sea Ferries. “Supply is a problem – Ireland only has a compressed natural gas network in place and does not have an established LNG network capable of supplying the fuel needs of W.B. Yeats,” explains Sheen. “All staff on LNG ships must have LNG training, and there is debate as to whether LNG is environmentally friendly since methane emissions are not currently measured. Fuel energy density is also an issue. Irish Ferries elected to operate on fuel oil, thus maintaining a common fuel requirement across its entire fleet.” In addition to fuel choice, Irish Ferries has made more environmentally sustainable choices throughout the ship. It has invested in LED lighting; variable frequency drives for high-energy consumers, such as HVAC systems; and lower resistance TBT (anti- fouling) paints to reduce fuel consumption and the harmful release of pollutants to marine life. Onboard, separation systems deal with food waste to reduce landfill, while disposable cups are biodegradable, and paper has been used in place of plastic straws and lids. “For passenger comfort and onboard services, Irish Ferries believes W.B. Yeats represents a significant step above existing ferry choices,” says Sheen. “From an operational perspective the flexibility of the ship is key in maximising our ability to meet the varied needs of all its customers, both freight and tourism alike.” C&F W.B. Yeats has been designed with the flexibility to operate on both short and long routes