Port of Leith to go live with shore power for ships

The Port of Leith has become the first large mainland commercial port in Scotland to provide a shore power connection, reflecting Forth Ports’ commitment to reducing its own carbon footprint as well as that of the shipowners.

Port of Leith

The first vessel that used the shore was Victoria 1, a passenger/RoRo ship currently used to accommodate Ukrainian refugees.

By switching to shore power, the vessel is now able to switch off all of its fossil fuel-powered generators, and with Forth Ports’ electricity being provided through non-fossil fuel generation, this is a significant step forward on the journey to net zero for the port, according to the officials.

As a business we are committed to reducing the emissions from our operations and we are encouraging shipping to do the same. This major civil engineering project to introduce shore power in Leith is a significant milestone for our business in Scotland and we are pleased that the Victoria 1 is now powered by mains electricity. We look forward to offering shore power to our other vessels visiting the port in 2023,” David Webster, Director of Energy at Forth Ports said.

Credit: Port of Leith

The electrical network in the port has been extended and integrated into the vessel’s systems through a PSW Power & Automation shore power transformer.

This setup is being further developed in the port’s Harbour Berth where it will be offered to offshore construction vessels which use Leith as their home port. This further expansion will be online later this month.

The Port of Leith is currently undergoing a major transformation to create Scotland’s largest renewable hub, including the development of a new deep water outer berth which will also be shore power enabled.

Scotland has legislated for some of the world’s most ambitious climate change targets and we will be a net zero nation by 2045. This is a great example of business taking action that will benefit us all. We’re grateful for the work undertaken by Forth Ports to make this happen,” Minister with special responsibility for refugees from Ukraine, Neil Gray, said.

Recently, another port in Scotland, Montrose Port Authority, partnered with Norwegian company Plug Shore Power Ltd in a 50/50 joint venture to become the first Scottish port to offer shore power to offshore energy vessels.

The installation of shore power, which is expected to take around six to twelve months to complete, would see a significant reduction of CO2 at Montrose which will be tracked through Plug’s administration system.

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