The Port of Tallinn is exploring options to expand renewably-powered shoreside power facilities for users at Muuga Harbour as it continues to reduce its carbon footprint.
The Port installed has installed five shoreside power facilities in five of its piers in the Old City Harbour, available to be utilised by vessels operating Estonian-Swedish and Estonian-Finnish routes.
But now the port will be expanding further with investment in Muuga Harbour, which handles varying forms of cargo.
“We are currently studying the possibility to install the shore power systems for ro-ro vessels in Muuga Harbour,” Ellen Kaasik, Head of Quality and Environmental Management at the Port of Tallinn, told PTI.
Kaasik added that power sourcing from the grid in Muuga Harbour should not need additional investments – just investment in the quayside facilities.
The port hopes the continued green investment will encourage port users to reduce their carbon footprint in-kind by retrofitting and developing their vessels to accommodate shorepower.
“The greatest challenge will be to convince our cooperation partners and clients – such as terminal operators, tenants – also to convert to green energy and to use environmentally-friendly handling equipment,“ Kaasik said.
”Another challenge is to encourage shipping companies to adopt environmentally friendlier technologies to achieve the zero-emission target.”
In the harbours of the Port of Tallinn in 2019 (inclusive of activities of tenants and operators, ship calls, and transport), Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions totalled 97,000 tons of CO2 equivalent. Some 53% were emissions from ship calls, followed by 23% from the consumption of electricity.
The news comes as the Port announced on 9 March that it consumes solely green electricity produced in Estonia, following an energy purchase agreement with Eesti Energia.
The purchase will supply the Port of Tallinn with 10 GWh of renewable electricity for the port’s own usage.
The port will power operations solely from solar, wind, or hydropower.
“Solar panels are used for producing the electricity in Passenger Terminal D and in the Cargo check-in building in Muuga Harbour,” Kaasik said.
“The new cruise terminal building, which will be ready in July 2021, will be heated by sea power and energy will also be drawn from solar panels. Most of our staff also prefers hybrid or electric cars.”
Kaasik continued that the use of renewable energy sources “are an important step in reducing the port’s ecological footprint” and achieving climate neutrality.
“When ensuring the sustainable development of the company, the emphasis is on environmental priorities and the pursuit of climate neutrality by 2050,“ Kaasik said.
“Additionally, we have aimed to deal with increasing the circular economy and energy efficiency, and we are also keeping an eye on the sustainable use of natural resources with an aim to consume more sustainably.“
The port is considering options for shorepower at Tallinn Old City Harbour for cruise vessels, which demand a much greater draw from the power grid.