Many ports in Europe are speeding up their efforts to deploy more Onshore Power Supply (OPS), according to the European Sea Ports Organisation (ESPO), and want to spend in OPS where it makes the most sense.
Onshore Power Supply (OPS) is an aspect of the greening of the shipping industry. It’s a crucial mechanism for lowering CO2 levels and air pollution at berths and in ports. Greening the maritime business is a top concern, and ports want to assist with this endeavor.
The ships berthed in the port terminals, while operating their diesel engines excessively during loading and unloading, are one of the factors affecting air quality in and around the port.
According to ESPO, a high upfront expenditure and substantial operating costs are required for an aggressive OPS implementation strategy. Since these risks cannot be met alone by ports, public financing is a must for a profitable OPS deployment. Focusing on delivering OPS where it produces cost-effective reductions in greenhouse gas emissions and air contamination at berth is the only way for Europe’s ports to ensure quick implementation of OPS while preventing a loss of public funds.
The European Sea Ports Organisation (ESPO), in collaboration with its representatives, has proposed a mechanism to assist ports and policymakers in implementing an appropriate and intelligent approach to OPS.
“European ports want to increase their OPS. If ports wish to prepare an aggressive and successful OPS deployment strategy, they must concentrate deployment efforts on areas where OPS is appropriate. The expense of installing OPS is too great to continue to do it anywhere without doing a thorough cost-benefit study. We were able to build a realistic set of do’s and don’ts for Operations by pooling the insights of ports who had done their research on OPS.
We defined a set of positive parameters that aid in investment prioritisation. “We agree that this review would provide policymakers with a greater understanding of what is required to develop an aggressive yet successful OPS deployment strategy as one of the tools to achieve the ultimate aim of the shipping sector’s greening,” says ESPO Secretary General Isabelle Ryckbost.
ESPO has defined main requirements to be evaluated collectively in order to promote positive and successful OPS policy: the ship’s (or shipping segment’s) OPS readiness; is the vessel (segment’s) spending enough time at berth for it to make sense to connect; are there frequent users of a berth (OPS connection is better in the case of a daily vessel call at the same berth); is the berth enough utilized to justify the investment; fresh berths are being planned (where OPS can directly be integrated into the planning of the port).
Any port-specific circumstances must be addressed in addition to these main criteria: the berth’s and port’s position, berth size and configuration to accommodate the vessel link, access to (public) financing, accessible grid power and access to renewable energy, and room on the berth to incorporate the OPS infrastructure.
Overall, European ports agree that finding a shipping segment that is OPS-suitable by itself and without any other requirements is exceedingly difficult. Certain shipment categories, though, could be more fitting and prioritised.