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Bergen opens first shore power connection

Bergen opens first shore power connection
The Norwegian port city of Bergen has announced its first “cold ironing” connection, created by shore power systems builder Schneider Electric in co-operation with cabling manufacturer Cavotec.

Opened today by Oistein Christoffersen, chairman of the Port of Bergen, the connection between a Schneider Electric “Shorebox” and DOF Anchor Handling Tug (AHT) Skandi Vega allowed the vessel to turn off its auxiliary engines and power its at-shore operations using electricity from Norway’s national grid.

Henning Warloe, Bergen’s urban development commissioner, also pledged NOK2.5m for “further development of the project.”

Inge Tangerås, director at the port, praised the decision by DOF to fit shore power capability to its vessel. “Despite the fact that it’s challenging for offshore operators with the low oil prices, DOF invested in Skandi Vega so it could be the first to benefit.” 

Tangerås added many in the offshore industry had expressed an interest in shore power connections, but that financial incentives would be needed for further adoption. “There’s moral support, whether there’s financial support remains to be seen. There needs to be some government funding to make this happen.”

Used at the port of Los Angeles for many years, where air quality regulations prevent shipping running off auxiliary power while in port, shore power technology is expected to be highly financially beneficial for container vessels and tankers, where vessels can switch off their engines while being loaded at port.

Despite indications that shore power could save owners money, particularly in the North Sea and Baltic Areas where the 0.1% Sulphur Cap prevents owners burning cheap HFO, Tangerås claimed there “was not a good business case” for offshore owners but “a good case for the environment.”

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