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Hamnavoe hub project gets the ‘green’ light

MV Hamnavoe.

A project to supply locally produced green electrical power to NorthLink Ferry MV Hamnavoe while she is docked in Stromness, Orkney, is due to get underway shortly, it was confirmed today, Wednesday.

The project is believed to be the first large commercial ship shore connection in the UK and is just one element of an overarching low carbon travel and transport project for the town.

This Stromness Multi-modal Low Carbon Transport and Active Travel Hub Project is born of a partnership between Orkney Islands Council, Schneider Electric and Serco NorthLink Ferries. According to these three parties, the new power supply system — known as “cold ironing” — will reduce the overnight carbon footprint from the vessel’s diesel generators and engines. It is believed that this will lower the ferry’s fuel consumption by at least 500 tonnes a year and resulting in a significant reduction in carbon dioxide. It is also hoped that this will make a contribution towards further reducing nitrogen oxides, sulphur oxides and noise.

According to the organisations behind these plans, it will be £160,000 cheaper to service MV Hamnavoe each year, as a result of the project. £670,000 of funding was secured for the scheme from the European Regional Development Fund in August last year, with additional funding coming from OIC’s Miscellaneous Piers and Harbours fund and HITRANS.

The scheme is expected to fully pay for itself in three years’ time through efficiencies and cost savings.

Organisations behind the project say that other benefits will include the installation of an electric bus charger at the ferry terminal to open up opportunities for an electric vehicle to be used on the Stromness to Kirkwall route. There are also plans for the installation of electric vehicle charging points, as well as  electric bicycles for use by members of the public.

For the full story, pick up a copy of The Orcadian, this Thursday.