Schneider Electric drives Dover to Calais green shipping corridor project

Press Release: Schneider Electric, the leader in the digital transformation of energy management and automation, today announced that it is a technical partner in an eight-month consultancy project to design and deliver the UK’s first green shipping corridor between the Ports of Dover, Calais and Dunkirk as part of the UK’s Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition (CMDC). 


As a key technical partner in the consultancy project, Schneider Electric will assess green energy pathway options for marine and land vessels and vehicles to facilitate the zero-emission movement of goods and people between the ports. In addition, Schneider Electric will conduct a land side port and fuel analysis and an assessment of ‘cold ironing’ capabilities to provide electrical power to berthed vessels.  


Schneider Electric will also build a “digital twin” – a scalable digital model of the Port of Dover’s electrical infrastructure – that will enable the port’s new shore power systems to be designed and tested virtually before being built and integrated into the port’s existing facilities, ensuring minimal service disruption. It will support the future power requirements of one of Europe’s busiest ports, which handles around £144bn worth of trade in goods.  


Peter Selway, Segment Marketing Manager at Schneider Electric, said: “Port operators are facing pressure to transition to more sustainable business models that meet with the net-zero ambitions of the Clean Maritime Plan. UK ports are also becoming energy producers, providing the shore power needed to charge electric and hybrid vessels. By partnering in this consultancy project, we’re able to advise the Port of Dover on how to strategically invest in the shore power capabilities and infrastructure needed to support a green shipping corridor. 


“The port is a vital link between the UK and Europe, accounting for more than a third of trade and most of the UK’s ferry traffic. Decarbonising this critical shipping channel will reduce maritime greenhouse gas emissions and provide a blueprint for other ports to follow. With over 90 years of experience, Schneider Electric is well placed to support Dover’s journey towards more sustainable and low carbon solutions.” 


Megan Turner, Environment and Sustainability Manager at the Port of Dover, said: “The Port of Dover is the UK’s busiest international ferry port and a vital gateway for the movement of people and trade, processing tens of thousands of passengers, cars, lorries and other vehicles every day. Some ferries operating from the port are being upgraded to run on electric batteries and other forms of renewable energy to reduce carbon emissions. This is a key part of our work to place Dover at the vanguard of decarbonisation within the UK port industry, with the ambition to become the world’s first high-volume green shipping corridor. 


“This represents a huge transition for us as we evaluate our current and future power needs. Working with Schneider Electric, we will be able to determine what type of electrical infrastructure we will need going forward to generate the energy required to power ships and the port itself. The consultation will help us open the green corridor and crucially allow us to understand better how to leverage shore power and manage energy supplies effectively. It also aligns with our ambition to become a sustainable port and be carbon net-zero by 2025.” 


Schneider Electric has already assisted the Port of Dover with Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition phase 1 to support the technological development necessary to reduce carbon emissions as part of the Port of Dover Air Quality Action Plan. In addition, Schneider Electric has played an active role in major shoreside installations, including the UK’s first large commercial ship-to-shore connection for the MV Hamnavoe ferry in Orkney, lowering fuel consumption through the provision of low-carbon electrical power.  


Header image: View of the Port of Dover  


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