Japan shipping firm Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha (NYK) Line, along with its affiliate Sanyo Kaiji Kabushiki Kaisha, has commenced ship-to-ship biofuel supply trial for tugboats.

According to NYK Line, this is a first in Japan.

Using biodiesel supplied by Toyotsu Energy, the companies will carry out the three-month test navigation in tugboats operated by Sanyo Kaiji.

“The biofuel will be supplied via ship-to-ship using a bunkering ship to supply fuel to the tug,” said the company.

Nagoya Port Authority is supporting NYK Line and its affiliate to conduct the biofuel supply and test navigation.

Biofuels, which serve as an alternative to heavy oil and help lower greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, are produced from renewable biological organic resources such as biomass.

NYK Line further noted: “Part of the biofuel supplied on April 19 at the Nagoya Port Garden Pier by the Sanyo Kaiji–operated tug Taharamaru was recycled from waste cooking oil collected from domestic Toyota Group and Toyota Tsusho Group companies.”

Additionally, NYK Line and Sanyo Kaiji will encourage the use of environment-friendly fuels such as biofuels as part of their efforts in the creation of a carbon-free society.

Last month, NYK Line took delivery of a liquefied natural gas (LNG)-powered pure car and truck carrier, dubbed Plumeria Leader, which was built at Japan’s Shin Kurushima Dockyard of Shin Kurushima Toyohashi Shipbuilding.

During each voyage, the vessel has the capacity to transport around 7,000 units.