Under the International Maritime Organization (IMO) 2020 regulation, BP Marine is set to introduce a very low-sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO) with a maximum of 0.5% sulphur content at locations across the world.

As part of the regulation, the sulphur limit in fuel oil used onboard ships operating outside designated emission control areas will be reduced to 0.50% beginning 1 January next year.

The initiative follows the company’s successful sea trials with fuel manufactured and supplied by BP in the Amsterdam / Rotterdam / Antwerp (ARA) and Singapore hubs.

BP Marine noted that VLSFO meets new MARPOL regulations limiting the sulphur content of marine fuels.

MARPOL was developed by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to reduce pollution of the oceans and seas.

BP worked with the IMO, customers and partners to develop a marine fuel offer that includes the new VLSFO, as well as marine gas oil and high-sulphur fuel oil for vessels equipped with scrubbers.

BP Marine global head Eddie Gauci said: “BP supports the ambitions of MARPOL to reduce air pollution from ships and we have been actively working with partners to prepare for its introduction.

“We believe we now have a robust commercial offer that will support customers in complying with MARPOL.”

“We have undertaken a comprehensive test campaign, conducting shipboard trials of our new very-low sulphur fuel.

“Following the success of these sea trials and working closely with our customers, we believe we now have a robust commercial offer that will support customers in complying with MARPOL.”

The company’s refineries have made several configuration changes to support the segregation, handling and storage of the fuels for manufacturing a complete range of MARPOL-compliant marine fuels.

Under Annex VI of the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL Convention), IMO regulations aiming to reduce sulphur oxides (SOx) emissions from ships became effective in 2005.

In October, IMO adopted a complementary amendment to support consistent implementation of its 0.50% limit on sulphur in ship fuel oil.