First green shipping corridor between UK and Ireland announced

NatPower Marine, who are developing the largest independent network of ship charging facilities, and Peel Ports Group, a major UK port operator, have announced plans to establish the first ‘green shipping corridors’ between Ireland and the UK.

The proposed project would see NatPower Marine develop the UK’s first commercial electric ship charging network to support electric propulsion and cold ironing (using clean power while docked to engine emissions in port), as part of a global network.

Ultimately the vision is that this infrastructure would be installed in the UK ports owned and operated by Peel Ports (Liverpool, Heysham, Manchester Ship Canal, Medway, Clydeport and Great Yarmouth) and their container terminal in Dublin.

The infrastructure would also include electric car, van and HGV chargers installed for commercial electric vehicles passing through the ports.

The first routes that have been identified are Belfast-Heysham and Dublin-Birkenhead. The Peel Port Group aim for Heysham Port  to become the UK’s first net zero port and to those ends it has already reduced the emissions of its landside plant, equipment and vehicles by up to 90%.

The 3,000 vessels that cross the Irish Sea every year emit 230,000 tonnes of CO2, 20,000 tonnes of nitrous oxide and 18,000 of sulphur oxide. One sixth of these emissions are produced whilst ships are berthed at port as they run auxiliary engines for power.

NatPower Marine ultimately aim to establish a £3 billion global charging network across 120 ports worldwide by 2030. They will develop the sites in partnership with port operators such as Peel Ports and act as the long-term operator of the charging network.

Stefano Sommadossi, CEO at NatPower Marine, said: ‘NatPower Marine is investing to deploy the largest global network of charging points to help solve the ‘chicken and egg conundrum’ facing this industry: shipping lines cannot electrify their vessels if port charging infrastructure is not available, and ports are unable to raise capital for charging infrastructure without certainty of demand from shipping lines.

‘With marine trade set to triple by 2050, we urgently need to build the global network of clean energy charging infrastructure the industry desperately needs. Our partnership with Peel Ports Group is the first step in this strategic approach to accelerate the adoption of clean energy in shipping and help cargo owners to reach net-zero.’

Claudio Veritiero, CEO at Peel Ports Group, said: ‘The proposals presented as part of this partnership are potentially game-changing, and fully support our ambitions to become a net-zero port operator by 2040.

‘We look forward to working closely with NatPower Marine to explore the possibilities for establishing the first green shipping corridor between the UK and Ireland, and further enabling support for our customers, shipping lines and hauliers as they transition to a greener future.’


Paul Day
Paul is the editor of Public Sector News.


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