Singapore-based Eastern Pacific Shipping (EPS) has secured a charter contract from US-based shipping and logistics firm Crowley for four liquefied natural gas (LNG)-powered newbuild containerships.

Under the long-term time charter contract, the latest generation, 1,400 twenty-foot equivalent unit (TEU) vessels will be chartered for Crowley’s US-Central America trade.

Constructed by South Korea’s Hyundai Mipo Dockyard, the vessels are expected to be delivered in 2025.

Compared with conventional diesel fuel, the use of LNG will help to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions, such as sulfur oxide, carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxide, as well as eliminate particulate matter.

To reduce methane slippage to negligible levels, the vessels will be installed with high-pressure ME-GI engines supplied by MAN Energy Solutions.

The vessels will also have 300 refrigerated unit plugs for the transportation of perishable cargo.

According to Crowley, the ships are anticipated to help the company extend its fleet and supply chain capabilities, linking the US with Nicaragua, Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador.

EPS CEO Cyril Ducau said: “Like EPS, Crowley enjoys a rich history and diverse business portfolios, but more importantly, their organisation is driven by a vision to lead the industry’s decarbonisation efforts.

“Once delivered, these vessels will be IMO 2030 compliant five years ahead of schedule and will play an important role as the world and industry transition to cleaner energy sources.”

In June, Wärtsilä won a contract to supply its hybrid propulsion system for 11 new pure car and truck carrier (PCTC) vessels being built for EPS.