The EU’s maritime transport is one of the most energy-efficient modes of transport. However, it is a considerable source of increasing GHG emissions representing 3-4% of the EU’s total carbon footprint. Even though currently there are no concrete obligations set in place to scale down maritime transport emissions, reducing them is part of the EU economy-wide reduction commitment under the Paris Agreement, and it also plays a role in the EU’s goal of achieving climate neutrality by 2050. Thus, efforts are being made within the EU to decarbonize all sectors, and further commitments are being set in place with the European Green Deal (Fit for 55 package).
In this context, the maritime sector is set to increase its climate ambition with the inclusion of the shipping sector in the EU ETS, increasing the demand for the use of renewable low-carbon fuels as well as alternative fuel infrastructure, in efforts to undergo an energy transition. For this reason, ports and maritime companies are called to pursue climate action and promote the use of efficient and clean energy by implementing innovative technologies to increase electrification of equipment, consumption of alternative fuels, etc.
In light of this, it is important to find sustainable alternatives for the technologies used within the maritime sector, that provide available options to help companies undergo a smooth transition and lower their GHG emissions. This is where the Sustainability EducationAl programme for greeNEr fuels and enerGY on ports (SEANERGY) project comes in. SEANERGY’s objective is to support the transition of ports towards zero-emission, green energy hubs that use hydrogen, integrated electricity systems, and other low-carbon fuels.
The SEANERGY project is developed in four work packages where the first one is “Understanding the current EU ports’ situation and stakeholders”. Within this work package, Task 1.2 is “Mapping of Technologies”, which aims to develop a catalogue of technologies for maritime and coastal communities and ports, including available technologies for sustainable energy generation and the use/production of alternative fuels. In addition, the catalogue of technologies is related to other work packages and sets the basis for the roundtables in the demoport and regional workshops to analyze the possibilities to implement decarbonization technologies in the sector. It will also contribute to the SEANERGY Master Plan and the Handbook.
The purpose of the catalogue of technologies is to map available technologies that allow for the generation/use of sustainable energy sources and decarbonization, identifying best practices, state-of-the-art solutions and future trends. The catalogue is structured into ten subsections that encompass the main equipment used within the maritime sector. In total, over 90 available technologies (both commercial and pilot) have been included in the catalogue.
The catalogue is structured into the main type of solutions that could be used in the maritime sector:
- Vessels’ electricity
- Internal Combustion Engines (ICE) and Fuel Cells
- Cargo Handling Equipment (CHE)
- Other mobile vehicles
- Fuel producers
- Fuel production technology
- Carbon capture
- Electricity production
- Energy efficiency
Each section is further divided in specific subsections using filters, to allow for a quicker and more efficient search of the desired technology.
Mapping the technologies allows companies within the maritime sector to refer to it when building their decarbonization strategies and defining future investments. This can expand the knowledge and use of low-carbon technologies and reduce decision times, encouraging the use of innovative sustainable alternatives.
It is important to note that some solutions might not work for all ports depending on their specific characteristics. On the other hand, some technologies might be suitable for a wide range of companies. Therefore, it is important that ports and companies within the maritime sector analyze their concrete needs and how the technology would work with their equipment and infrastructure before implementing it.
The catalogue of technologies will be integrated on the SEANERGY project webpage in a specific section organized in the ten subsections that encompass the main equipment used within the maritime sector.