Container terminal at Port of Gothenburg to be fossil fuel free by 2020

Container terminal at Port of Gothenburg to be fossil fuel free by 2020

APM Terminals (APMT) Gothenburg has launched a climate strategy aiming to become fossil fuel free by 2020, while supporting the port authority’s goal to reduce carbon emissions by 70% by 2030.

In order to achieve these goals, a machine park will be completely run on renewable fuels, rail-borne freight will need to be doubled and loading and discharge operations will be optimised.

The port authority has already been climate neutral since 2015. Shore side power for vessels has been available since the beginning of the 2000s, and a special port tariff discount for vessels that report a good environmental performance has been in place since 2013.

Elvir Dzanic, Gothenburg Port Authority chief executive, said: “A growing number of transport purchasers are demanding a solid, assertive, and quantifiable environment and climate work, which is a fact that gives us a competitive edge over other ports.

“Alongside increased digitalisation and growth, we regard our environment and climate work as a key factor that will enable us to achieve our vision of becoming the world’s most competitive port.”

Under the port’s latest targets, port-related carbon emissions will be reduced by 70% by 2030, not only within the port itself but also throughout an area extending from the outer port entrance 15 km west, right up to the city boundary.

Dzanic added: “This is unique. There is no other port in the world that is working according to such a strict environmental target. But despite our spirit and determination, it will be difficult to realise our goals if we do not have the major players in and around the port with us all the way.”

APMT’s ‘Green Gothenburg Gateway’ strategy involves measures such as electrically operated cranes and gates, and terminal buildings heated by biogas.

The container handling equipment, including more than 40 straddle carriers, will be powered by fossil-free fuel HVO100. All measures are to be implemented by 2020.

The operator is already implementing a programme designed to optimise vessel times at berth, thus preventing vessels from having to increase speed to be on time for their next port call, which would require more fuel usage.

Although 22% of vessels that call at the container terminal arrive later than agreed, ongoing optimisation of loading and discharge ensures that 97% of vessels leave the quayside at the appointed time, sometimes earlier.

Over the next three years, APMT intends to double the freight volumes transported by rail, having modernised and increased the capacity of the terminal’s rail handling system.

Outside the terminal, the Gothenburg Port Authority has invested about €50m (US$55m) in the Railport Scandinavia network, including joint financing of the double-track expansion of the rail network leading in to the port, and two rail-connected crossdocking terminals – the Arken Combi Terminal and the soon to be opened Svea Terminal.

Claes Sundmark, vice president of sales and marketing at Gothenburg Port Authority, said: “The investments made by us and APMT Gothenburg have resulted in rail becoming an even more attractive option. This year alone we have seen a 20% rise in volumes.”