SELECTION OF LIQUEFIED NATURAL GAS MARITIME TRANSPORT CARRIER: AN INTEGRATED APPROACH OF LIFE CYCLE SUSTAINABILITY ASSESSMENT AND MULTI-CRITERIA DECISION MAKING
AuthorASEEL, SALEH TAHER
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Incorporating sustainability considerations into the distribution network processes is a major challenge for any maritime shipping operations, particularly in the energy sector. Liquefied natural gas (LNG) is carried worldwide by specialized LNG carriers as a major energy source. Considering that LNG is one of the largest and most important forms of energy, the mode of transportation for LNG products must have a lower environmental impact. While the research has investigated such environmental effects, there has been minimal focus on the social and economic sustainability of natural gas production and supply chains. The primary goal of this work is to build an integrated sustainability assessment model to assess and select the most sustainable LNG carrier option by considering all dimensions of sustainability and stakeholder perspectives. To realize this goal, a life cycle sustainability assessment (LCSA) model is created to determine macro-level sustainability impacts of various LNG maritime carrier types, which are composed of Q-Flex, Q-Max, Conventional type 1, and Conventional type 2. Later, the analytic hierarchy process (AHP) is applied to determine the essential weights of each evaluation criteria, factors, and sub-factors considered in the LCSA model. Finally, integrated AHP-TOPSIS and integrated AHP-PROMETHEE II methods rank the sustainability performance of different carrier sections in order to support the decision-making process. The results show that Conventional type 2 achieves the best sustainability performance among the four types of LNG maritime transport carriers, while Q-Flex presents the lowest performance following both AHP-TOPSIS and AHP-PROMETHEE II methods. We suggest several recommendations to get more precise results in the future, considering the entire LNG process chain under uncertainty.
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