Portsmouth explores the provision of shore power

Monday, December 13, 2021 - 19:32 by ce-press

Brittany Ferries are committed to bring hybrid LNG/plug-in ferries to Portsmouth from 2024. In order to accommodate these ferries, it will necessary to supply 4.5mW of shore power at berths 3 and 4.

“We also need to provide shore power to our cruise customers which means supplying 12mW on our main cruise berth, berth 2,” says Ian Diaper, head of operations Portsmouth International Port. “Reducing emissions by 90% alongside, this needs to be in place by 2024. The cruiselines we are working with have committed to be shorepower-ready by then.”

The port is presently trialling a battery storage pack the size of a container which, if successful, will provide shorepower on berth 1. Diaper says: “If it proves it’s worth, by the end of 2022 we will be able to supply 1mw an hour to the Noble Caledonia ships that dock here.” In addition battery packs could provide an element of the shorepower at berth 2, possibly 2/3mW eventually, according to Diaper. “However the grid will need to upgraded massively to get the power we need, 12mW, hopefully by end of 2025.

“Currently shore power can only be supplied through the national grid but there is not the power available in the locality to supply it. This is a £50 million (€58.5 million) project which will absolutely need government support.”

Diaper believes that governments and cruiselines need to join together in looking towards the future and researching where it lies in terms of energy/fuel supply, for example methanol, hydrogen etc. “There needs to be significant investment to help fund schemes, and we hope to work with the government to find opportunities to provide alternative power.”

Portsmouth’s aim is to be carbon neutral by 2030 but it is unlikely to achieve this without outside investment. As Diaper explains: “There is not one UK port that has invested in shore power without government support. There is never a business case for it otherwise.”

This year there were more than 130 calls to the UK city, most of which were technical calls, for example linked to crew repatriation and also a tie-in with the NHS for crew vaccinations.

Next year well over 100 calls are expected including an number of turnarounds, for example Virgin Voyages’ Valiant Lady undertaking her maiden season, Swan Hellenic’s Vega, Oceania Cruises’ Marina and Serena, Fred Olsen Cruise Lines’ Balmoral and Mystic Cruises’ World Voyager. Noble Caledonia, Sea Cloud Cruises and Hurtigruten are all returning. In terms of transit calls, newcomers are AIDAsol and AIDAvita as well as Seabourn Ovation, Viking Mars and World Navigator. Returning favourites include Phoenix Reisen, Lindblad Cruises and Cruises to Antiquity.

Finally, a new terminal annex is scheduled to be delivered by April 2023 to accommodate these extra calls.
Portsmouth explores the provision of shore power
Island Sky, Hebridean Sky and Viking Star in Portsmouth (c) Portsmouth International Port

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