Container ship operator Seaboard Marine has completed the port of Miami’s first LNG bunkering operation.

The US line conducted the operation using the 1,036-teu Seaboard Blue (built 2011), which it purchased recently from German interests.

Calling at PortMiami for the first time on 12 March, the feeder vessel will be part of Seaboard’s North Central America service.

Shell used a bunker barge to load the vessel with LNG prior to its inaugural southbound sailing to Honduras and Guatemala.

“The Seaboard Blue is a key new component to Seaboard’s fleet transformation,” said chief executive Eddie Gonzalez.

“The recent purchase of this LNG-powered ship not only demonstrates Seaboard Marine’s ongoing commitment to sustainability but also to providing reliable service to our customers.”

Eventful career

The move marks another stage in the eventful career of the 12-year-old container vessel.

The former Wes Amelie made history when it was retrofitted in 2017, making it the world’s first container ship converted from conventional diesel propulsion to LNG.

It was also the first vessel to be bunkered with synthetic LNG in Germany in 2021.

Elbdeich Reederei bought the vessel in February 2021, operating it as the ElbBlue.

It was purchased from Wessels Reederei in a bank sale for around $9m, according to VesselsValue, before Seaboard bought it in December for a unnamed price.

Last month, Seaboard sold the 974-teu Seaboard Atlantic (built 2009) to Elbdeich. Renamed Elbrunner, it operates on Unifeeder’s new Dominican Republic-Haiti-Puerto Rico service, according to Alphaliner.