John W. Stone Oil Distributor, LLC is taking delivery of its first “green” inland midstream refueling barge from Tres Palacios Marine in Palacios, Texas. The 160 x 54-ft. double hull barge is the latest addition to the fleet of equipment Stone Oil uses to support its customer base as well as its various terminal operations. Stone Oil discussed ways to improve the existing midstream fuel barge design with its marine personnel as well as its shore based maintenance staff. This was coupled with requests from customers to provide a means to deliver various grades of fuel, lubricants, water and other related products and services.
What is unique and “green” about this vessel, S-49, is its ability to deliver and remove products that will be crucial for existing and new build vessels to meet the ever increasingly stringent emission standards. It will reportedly be the first vessel in the U.S. capable of delivering Selective Catalytic Reactor fluid in bulk and receive effluent from scrubber equipped vessels.
“Though not prevalent at this time, after detailed discussions with equipment manufacturers and customers, both domestically and internationally, we made the decision to design and build this barge,” said Tony Odak, VP at Stone Oil. “After thorough design review by the USCG and various vetting agencies, Stone Oil will have a barge that not only meets current emissions standards, but has capability and redundancy to meet future energy efficiency requirements.
This is not the only barge Tres Palacios Marine has built for Stone Oil. The two companies formed an alliance back in 2010 building refueling barges. “In 2010, we had just completed improvements to our yard to allow for the construction of 300 ft. barges,” said Jo Anne Estopinal, President, Tres Palacios Marine. “Stone Oil came to us with request to build a series of 140-150-ft. vessels, smaller than we had ever built. Each vessel required minor changes and tweaking in order to meet Stone Oil’s strict standards.”
Tres Palacios Marine, established in 2006, is the second barge construction yard currently owned by the Fiegel family of Galveston, Texas. The other yard, West Gulf Marine, was established in 1998 and, dating back to 1966, the Fiegel family shared in the ship building experience with Harry Fiegel, the father of this family, at Galveston Shipbuilding Company.