The voyage took place before the traditional start of the summer navigation season in average ice conditions, with the maximum ice thickness on the route reaching 1.3 meters. Eastbound transportation of LNG along the NSR is not normally performed in May as this represents one of the most difficult months for navigation.
The “Christophe de Margerie” left the port of Sabetta on 18 May 2020, passed the Ob Bay and a part of the Kara Sea without ice-breaker assistance and then met with Atomflot’s nuclear icebreaker “Yamal” (part of ROSATOM), which escorted the tanker with ice navigation on the Еastern part of the NSR. The tanker will deliver an LNG cargo produced at Yamal LNG to China.
"This unique tanker voyage is the result of NOVATEK’s detailed logistics solutions, exceptional ice performance of our Arctic LNG tanker fleet and the coordinated work of the entire team. We are grateful to the crews of the “Christophe de Margerie” LNG tanker and the “Yamal” nuclear icebreaker, who both demonstrated high professionalism in harsh Arctic conditions, representing the best traditions of the Russian school of navigation,” noted Leonid Mikhelson, NOVATEK’s Chairman of the Management Board.
“We are actively working to expand the eastbound navigation season for the NSR and looking forward to further development of State support for this trade route by increasing icebreaking capabilities as well as full-scale navigation and hydrographic assistance for shipping. This support allows us to significantly contribute to the annual cargo turnover along the Northern Sea Route by implementing our large-scale LNG projects to produce up to 70 million tons by 2030”, Mikhelson noted.
To read the full story in Russian.