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Wolverine Terminals Bringing Bunkering to Prince Rupert

Photo courtesy of Wolverine Terminals

A first-of-its-kind bunker delivery service is coming to the Port of Prince Rupert. The service will enable vessels to take large volumes of bunkers alongside all of the port’s major terminals and in the inner anchorages.

Prince Rupert remains one of the few major global ports that does not offer refueling services for cargo vessels. Instead, vessels needing bunkers must deviate to the Port of Vancouver or further south, somewhere along the US West Coast.

The project, from Wolverine Terminals ULC, includes the construction of a specific use marine berth and specially designed rail and bunker delivery barges. The bunkers will be sourced from refineries in Western Canada and railed to Prince Rupert on an established rail network.

Wolverine will use the existing Aquatrain Terminal in Prince Rupert to receive the rail cars which will then be loaded on to their purpose-built rail barge. From there, the rail barge is towed approximately 400 metres to their new marine berth to meet up with the delivery barge. The fuel is then transferred from the rail to the distribution barge for delivery to vessels alongside or at anchorage.

Wolverine are currently targeting late 2023 to have the operation up and running.

Some key highlights of the project:

Bunker Barge
• Barge Storage Capacity: 10 heated, segregated tanks totaling: approximately 4500 MT (31kb), Installed Mass Flow Meters

• Est Pump Rates: LSMGO: 200mt/hr, VLSFO: 600mt/hr

The fuel distribution barge will have a capacity of approximately 4,500 metric tonnes and measure approximately 78 metres in length. The barge will be equipped with a deck mounted container with spill response equipment for rapid deployment. The fuel distribution barge will be a modern double-hulled vessel. Motorized engines will be designed to best industry standards to minimize noise and air emissions. The fuel tanks will meet the requirements set out in the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL), as well as Transport Canada regulations.

Rail Barge – Floating Storage
• Barge Storage Capacity: 12 heated segregated tanks totaling: ~12,500 MT (90kb). Installed Mass Flow Meters
• Products: LSMGO, VLFSO, capability to blend to customer specs

The barge is 142m in length and will be able to accommodate up to 24 rail tank cars on deck. The barge has a double hull with spill prevention under each rail car. Additionally, there will be a peripheral coaming surrounding the entire deck. There will also be spill response equipment on board, as well as a floating containment boom surrounding the barge. The rail barge also has the capability to blend multiple commodities to specification by use of 12 segregated tanks and a precise blending skid.

Distances from Wolverine’s marine berth to approved delivery locations:
1. DP World Container Port: 1.9km
2. Drax Wood Pellet Terminal: 0.4km
3. Prince Rupert Grain: 8km
4. AltaGas LPG/Trigon Coal: 9km
5. Inner Anchorages: 0.5km – 8km

Statistics courtesy of Wolverine Terminals