Catapult backed Port of Aberdeen project secures Government funding

Seven berths at the Scottish port are to provide green energy following a grant from the Zero Emission Vessels and Infrastructure competition.

Connected Places Catapult is delighted to be playing a key role in a sustainable power project at the Port of Aberdeen which this week secured Government funding.

The multi-million pound ‘Shore Power in Operation’ project will see the design and installation of shore power facilities to accommodate hybrid or fully electric vessels at seven berths in the port’s North Harbour.

The project was promised match funding from the Department for Transport on Monday, as part of the Zero Emissions Vessels and Infrastructure (ZEVI) competition, which awarded £80 million of research and development funding to 10 marine and port projects supported by 52 organisations.

Consortium members in the project are the Port of Aberdeen, Connected Places Catapult, Energy Systems Catapult, DOF (UK) Ltd, Tidewater Marine UK, OSM Offshore Aberdeen, the University of Manchester and Buro Happold.

The Shore Power in Operation demonstrator project aims to cut vessel emissions at the berths by more than 80% compared with burning marine fuel; saving over 60,000 tonnes of CO2 equivalent over the next 20 years.

Start of the project follows a successful Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition (CMDC)-funded feasibility study into the proposal which completed in March 2022.

“Partnership between the public and private sectors is essential to decarbonise the maritime industry. Aberdeen has firmly established itself as a port of choice for innovation and collaboration in this area and the ZEVI funding further strengthens our position.”
Port of Aberdeen’s Chief Executive, Bob Sanguinetti

He added that Aberdeen has a bold ambition to become the UK’s first net zero port by 2040, by investing £55 million over the next 10 years. “Shore power is critical to achieving our ambition, and we look forward to working with our industry partners to deliver this ground-breaking emissions reduction project.”

Last month, Connected Places Catapult published a report on behalf of the Port of Aberdeen setting out how the port could decarbonise operations at its new £420 million Aberdeen South Harbour, which has just been completed. The CMDC funded ‘Port Zero’ study was delivered in partnership with Connected Places Catapult, Buro Happold and Energy Systems Catapult.

Connected Places Catapult’s Ecosystem Director for Maritime and Ports, Mark Wray described the Government’s announcement of ZEVI funding as “fantastic” and said it will allow “new technologies to be deployed in real world situations” adding that the funding represents “a wonderful legacy of the UK SHORE programme”.

UK SHORE – the UK Shipping Office for Reducing Emissions – is focused on clean maritime technologies that can be scaled rapidly to decarbonise the UK’s domestic maritime sector. In March 2022, the Department for Transport allocated £206 million to UK SHORE to deliver a set of interventions until 2025 aimed at accelerating the design, manufacture and operation of UK-made clean maritime technologies.

Mark added that the Port of Aberdeen’s Shore Power in Operation project could be used to power large working vessels such as one being built under another ZEVI project led by Bibby Marine.