Aberdeen Harbour receives green funding for blueprint shore power demonstration project

Aberdeen Harbour has received more than £400,000 from the UK Government to fund a joint demonstration project aimed at providing shore power within the existing Aberdeen North Harbour.

The partnership with Connected Places Catapult will act as a blueprint for other UK ports to introduce the sustainable fuel alternative for vessels berthed alongside.

The grant was part of the UK Government’s £20 million Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition which was introduced to drive innovation for clean maritime and shipping projects.

Bob Sanguinetti, Chief Executive of Aberdeen Harbour Board, said: “This funding will be critical as we work with Connected Places Catapult to undertake a Feasibility Study for a demonstration project to provide green shore power in our existing port.

“Our extensive research and data shows that 70% of CO2 emissions in the port comes from vessels berthed alongside the quays. Ultimately, this demonstration project could reduce the port’s emissions by up to 50%.

“Shore power to avoid vessel emissions at berth is an established technology, but significant technical differences exist with the appropriate physical infrastructure and system specifications. With this feasibility study and demonstration project, we will be looking at small to medium vessels, such as Offshore Service Vessels, which regularly visit our busy port.”

Connected Places Catapult, the UK’s innovation accelerator for cities, transport and place leadership, is working to support this vital work at Aberdeen Harbour through connecting with other UK port regions and providing a place centred blueprint of the future green port that can be utilised by other ports across the country. We connect businesses and public sector leaders to cutting-edge research, helping to develop, implement and commercialise the latest technology and innovation for existing markets, as well as create demand and grow new markets in the UK and globally.

Paul Wilson, Chief Business Officer at Connected Places Catapult said, “The UK is a maritime nation, and our ports and coastal communities are at the heart of that ecosystem. Connected Places Catapult is pleased to be working with Aberdeen Harbour to establish a green port blueprint that delivers impact for the port and the region, building on the already excellent initiatives in Aberdeen to create a greener, re-energised future for coastal communities across the UK”.

Mr Sanguinetti continued, “This demonstrator project contributes to our three-strand established Green Port Strategy, and we believe it will be a blueprint for the implementation of shore power which can be replicated in other UK ports.

“We are working closely with our partners and port users on innovative solutions to drive down emissions at Aberdeen Harbour, and with our multi-million investments in port infrastructure, Aberdeen Harbour can become the green port of the future.”

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The Aberdeen Harbour Project is part of the Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition, funded by the Department for Transport and delivered in partnership with Innovate UK.

Announced in March 2020, and part of the Prime Minister’s Ten Point Plan to position the UK at the forefront of green shipbuilding and maritime technology, the Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition is a £20m investment from government alongside a further c.£10mfrom industry to reduce emissions from the maritime sector. The programme is supporting 55 projects across the UK, including projects in Scotland, Northern Ireland and from the South West to the North East of England. As set out in the Clean Maritime Plan (2019), Government funding has been used to support early stage research relating to clean maritime. The programme will be used to support the research, design and development of zero emission technology and infrastructure solutions for maritime and to accelerate decarbonisation in the sector.