Green Coastal Shipping Programme with futuristic projects that could transform our coastlines

Through the Green Coastal Shipping Programme Norway has established a joint program between government and industry to create the world’s most effective and environmentally-friendly fleet of coastal vessels. The program is aiming to revolutionise the way coastal shipping operates, converting fleets to run partly or entirely on batteries, liquified natural gass (LNG) or other green fuels. The program has now presented the first five pilot projects focusing on environmentally-friendly fuels and energy efficient design.

Norway has launched an award-winning joint programme between government and industry to create the world’s most environmentally-friendly fleet of coastal vessels. The first five pilot projects have been revealed, with a particular focus on environmentally-friendly fuels and energy efficient design. “When we launched the Green Coastal Shipping Programme, we said we wanted to make Norway a world showcase for green coastal shipping,” says programme director, DNV’s Narve Mjøs. “With these five pioneering pilot projects we are well on our way.”

Project 1: “cargo ferry” plug-in hybrid

This short sea container ship will have zero emissions while sailing in and out of port and during port operations, thanks to a plug-in hybrid LNG/battery propulsion system. The ship cranes will re-generate power during operation. Once the technical concept is developed, project leader Nor Lines will calculate the ship’s environmental footprint, and weigh up whether it will be cost effective to develop further.

cargo ferry plug-in hybrid

Project 2: next-generation green shuttle tanker

Battery technology has never been used in shuttle tankers before. This project will explore how batteries could improve tanker operations, cut back the amount of installed power a ship needs, and potentially be used as back-up energy reserves. Under the pilot, project lead Teekay Tankers will also look at new ways of harnessing the Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) produced during ship operations. By capturing and condensing these gases into liquid, VOCs could be used as an energy source, reducing fuel consumption and the tanker’s environmental impact.

next-generation green shuttle tanker
Project 2. Photograph: Teekay Tankers

Project 3: hybrid ocean farming vessel

This pilot will investigate the best hybrid propulsion system to use in ocean farming vessels. Project owners ABB and the Cargo Freighters’ Association will explore how these boats can be made more energy efficient in different operational modes, especially while in dynamic positioning mode at the fish farm, with more back-ups to guard against system failures.

hybrid ocean farming vessel
Project 3. Photograph: ABBandCargo Freighters’ Association

Project 4: NGA and Øytank Bunkerservice

This project aims to turn a standard cargo carrier into one powered by a mix of LNG and battery technology. The vessel would produce no emissions during port operations. Project leads Øytank Bunkerservice and the Norwegian Gas Association will investigate whether converting an existing cargo carrier could be more cost-effective for small LNG carriers.

conversion of cargo carrier into battery-hybrid LNG carrier
Project 4. Photograph: NGA and Øytank Bunkerservice

Project 5: pioneering green port project

The fifth pilot project aims to slash energy consumption and the carbon footprint at Risavika Harbour in Stavanger, in the south-west of Norway. It will explore technology including electric-powered heavy vehicles and cranes, smart gates for more environmentally-friendly trucking, and charging stations for plug-in hybrid ships. The project will also investigate energy hub services in a more differentiated fuel mix, and ‘cold ironing’ services, whereby ships at berth plug into onshore electricity so equipment can still operate while a vessel’s engines are off and batteries of hybrid ships are charged.

pioneering green port project
Project 5. Photograph: Risavika Havn

From the drawing board to the real world

Once these pilots have gone through the concept phase, each of the project leads will weigh up the environmental impacts and costs involved, before deciding whether to develop the technologies further. Norway, already a world leader when it comes to the uptake of hybrid and electric cars, could set the same global benchmark when it comes to coastal shipping.

Learn more about the programme in our news "Norwegian joint effort to ensure green coastal shipping".

Get in touch with the programme director Narve Mjøs

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