Photo: Courtesy of the Port of Felixstowe

Port of Felixstowe targets ops decarbonisation with new equipment

Hutchison Ports Port of Felixstowe, the UK’s largest container port, has made a ‘major’ investment in new equipment to help decarbonise its operations.

Courtesy of the Port of Felixstowe

The investment includes orders for 48 battery-powered terminal tractors and 17 zero-emission Remote controlled Electric Rubber-Tyred Gantry cranes (ReARTGs).

Chinese state-owned Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industries (ZPMC) will deliver the new two-wheel-drive tractor units, that will be the first electric tractors at the UK’s largest container port. As informed, ZPMC is working with its partner Shacman to develop the battery-powered tractor units.

The ReARTGs, which will be fitted with the latest semi-automation technology, will be supplied by the Finnish manufacturer Konecranes.

Additionally, the port plans to upgrade its high voltage (HV) electrical power distribution network to support the use of the new equipment. Furthermore, Port of Felixstowe will install new electrical infrastructure to support the ReARTGs and ten charging stations for the battery-powered terminal tractors.

Chris Lewis, CEO at the Port of Felixstowe, said: “This order represents the latest part of our plan to reduce the environmental impact of our operations. In total, replacing 48 diesel-powered tractor units and 17 conventional RTGs with new electrical equipment will save 6,662 tonnes of CO2 and 59.38 tonnes of NOx emissions every year“.

According to Lewis, the port reduced its carbon footprint by 30% since 2015 through a range of measures including the first phase of its programme to phase out diesel-powered yard cranes.

The latest investment, coinciding with the ongoing COP26 conference, is expected to help drive further substantial reductions in the port’s future and help reach the target of a further 20% reduction over the next five years.

Working with partners, including Ryse Hydrogen, to explore the use of hydrogen-powered port equipment and with Cranfield University, Sizewell C and EDF, the Port of Felixstowe is involved in one of the projects selected to receive support from the Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition.

The project involves a feasibility study into the potential for Freeport East, which includes the ports of Felixstowe and Harwich International, to become a net-zero port and a net-zero energy hub for third parties and the adjacent region.