First pilot test of LNG transport by road, rail and sea successfully carried out in Europe

10 December 2018

• The test consisted of transporting liquefied natural gas (LNG) in a special container from Huelva to Melilla by different means of transport

• This initiative is part of the CORE LNGas hive project, coordinated by Enagás and led by the Spanish Ports Authority, to achieve more sustainable transport

• Renfe Mercancías, Cepsa, Enagás and the Port Authorities of Bahía de Algeciras, Huelva, Melilla and Cartagena are participating in this activity

The CORE LNGas hive project has successfully carried out the first pilot test of multimodal transport of liquefied natural gas (LNG) in Europe. The initiative has consisted of transporting LNG in an isocontainer — a type of special tank container, adjusted to ISO standards, for the cryogenic transport of liquefied gases — from Huelva to Melilla, by road, rail and sea.

The LNG was loaded into the isocontainer at the Enagás Regasification Plant located in the Port of Huelva. From there, it was transported by truck to the Huelva Port Railway Terminal, where it was transferred to a train. The train travelled to Majarabique station (Seville), and from there it was transported by truck to the Port of Algeciras (Cadiz). There, it was transferred to a vessel which made the journey from Algeciras to Melilla.
This pilot test demonstrates the effectiveness of the isocontainer as a versatile and flexible solution for transporting natural gas. It facilitates the loading and unloading of LNG and can be easily handled from one means of transport to another, allowing the gas to travel long distances in a faster and safer manner. At the same time, it highlights the efficiency of the railway as a new key logistics solution to respond competitively to the growing demand for alternative fuels. This opens up the possibility that new locations and markets access LNG.


The success of the initiative has been possible thanks to the partners of CORE LNGas hive who participate in this activity of multimodal LNG transport: Enagás, Renfe Mercancías, Cepsa, the Port Authorities of Bahía de Algeciras, Huelva, Melilla and Cartagena. Also, the project had the collaboration of Crisergas, which carried out the transport operations of the isocontainer under the logistic supervision of Cepsa, and the company Setolazar, owner of the isocontainer.

CORE LNGas hive project
The aim of the CORE LNGas hive project, which is co-funded by the European Commission, is to develop the necessary logistics to drive the supply of LNG as a fuel in the transport sector (particularly maritime transport) in the Iberian Peninsula.

Led by the Spanish Ports Authority and coordinated by Enagás, this project has a total of 42 partners from Spain and Portugal: 8 institutional partners, 13 port authorities and 21 industrial partners — LNG operators, shipbuilders, regasification companies and other companies —.

LNG is the most environmentally friendly fuel. Compared to traditional fuels, it completely eliminates sulphur oxides (SOx) emissions and particles (PM) and substantially reduces nitrogen oxides (NOx). Its use on vessels will help to comply with environmental standards in the maritime sector and advance the decarbonisation process of the Mediterranean and Atlantic corridors. This is in line with the European Union's strategy on alternative fuel infrastructures (Clean Power for Transport).


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