Styrene and Phenol in the FO

This gcaptain article about bunker contaminated with phenols and styrene. I never came across this before.

I found out this about it:

The source of Phenols could be from the use of Shale Oil as cutter stock. Styrene, Indene and DCPD are refinery waste products which should not be present in the bunker fuel at these high levels.

(from the website mfame)

How do we treat for this?

Well, we could ban shale oil. I know a lotta GOM companies that would kill for that solution.

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I mean. What do when do when we have it in the bunker tanks all ready. Is there a way to separate it? Some chemical magic? Shamanistic ritual?

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The cheapest option is likely just dumping the fuel and cleaning out the tank. It doesn’t sound like there are any feasible treatment options once it’s on board the ship.

I think there has been an issue here in Singapore with dead ships and bunkers made from fracking oil

Fracking has nothing to do with the refining process. Comes down to the residue mixed into the various FOs.

Just hope you are on a steamship where the credo is; if we can pump it, we can burn it. Not much else can be done other than offloading it or mixing (diluting) it to a point where the contamination levels can be dealt with by ships equipment.


its how those chemical got into the bunkers and as they dont exist in crude they are not tested for
Refinery knows where the crude comes from

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Quite a few years ago the oil we got in Tacoma had unusual amounts of nickel and in it. Found out later used motor oil was being mixed in. We dealt with nickel the same as vanadium as far as the dosage of snake oil (magnesium oxide) additives.

Isn’t that what I said? In 2005, I took a newbuild out of the yard. I had crawled every inch of all the tanks. The first bunker, I loaded 4500 bbl of mgo from an outfit out of Mobile. The fuel samples looked good on the start and midstream. Evidently they flushed the barge tanks and hoses of HFO. We battled the residue for months cleaning the centrifuge every 8 hrs.

you talked about about refining not me, I said the 380 source was fracked oil hence the chemicals in it
The research into the issue stated that.

Chief. Your post reminds me of an important question that comes up from time to time: Can used lube oil be disposed of by simply adding it to the diesel fuel? If so, in what proportions?

From Splash 24/7 today:

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yes but its now illegal to do that. It s was common in the old days

so those chemicals that stops ships are now in the groundwater?

As @powerabout said yes but can get you in hot water if done nowadays. I couldn’t tell you the proportion amounts other than say the key was to dilute it as much as possible. One scenario was put the used oil in drums and let it settle out as much as possible and then dump all but maybe 6" of the drum into the fuel tanks. Again, not something that should be done today.

I have seen guys try to burn it almost straight but often the injectors would fowl and show signs of wear. If engines have DPF systems installed burning used oil the lube oil ash will plug up the these filters. The ash does not burn off like normal soot is suppose to.

More and better testing of bunker fuel on the cards:

GUARD warning that fuel contamination is wide spread and source unknown:

How can it be unknown? Follow the trail of chemical sales and industrial waste disposal until the faked paperwork shows up. Follow the money involved in illegally disposing of industrial waste by blending with fuel at the refinery or distributor.

If the regulators really wanted to know it would not be difficult to trace the source.

That is the statement by GUARD, which is one of the leading P&I Clubs not a regulator.
Assuming that the source is deliberate mixing of contaminants to the fuel it should be detectable, but if the source is from the crude oil used to produce the fuel it MAY not be as easy.

It has been speculated that the source may be shale oil contaminated in the fracking process. (??)