"Power-to-Gas Jupiter 1000", "LOOP-Ports" and "Carbon Neutral 2035" projects all offer inspiring examples for ports seeking practical steps towards energy transition
Ports subscribe to the Paris Agreement climate goal that aims to keep global warming well below 2°C. To achieve this Port community actors can collaborate in refining and developing tools to facilitate reduction of CO2 emissions and greenhouse gas from shipping, port and land-side operations. They can also take initiatives to enable energy transition, improve energy efficiency and stimulate circular economy. The three following finalists in the WPSP Climate and Energy Award category do just that.
Power to Gas is the remarkable transformation of surplus electrical current into gas that would otherwise go wasted through electrolysis by means of water. Such a process can enable the storage of excess renewable energy - whether it is solar, wind or wave generated - by means of the hydrogen that is produced, injecting this into the gas network.
In parallel, using an innovative methanation technology, the hydrogen generated can react with CO2 captured from a nearby industrial site to produce methane. The methane is then injected to the gas network, closing a circular economy loop as what was polluting CO2 can now be used to produce energy.
The Jupiter 1000 project is the first industrial demonstrator of Power to Gas of its kind with a power rating of 1 MWe for electrolysis and a methanation process with carbon capture. An industrial site at the Port of Marseille Fos has been as the selected site for the EUR 30 million demonstrator. Two electrolysers will produce green hydrogen involving different technologies, from 100% renewable energy. The produced hydrogen will then feed the gas network.
In the longer term, the idea is to broadly implement the Power to Gas concept throughout France. More than 15 TWh of gas could be produced each year using the Power to Gas system by 2050.
There is a high international interest in Jupiter 1000 with more than 1000 visitors and 20 delegations from all over the world having visited the site to date.
Currently, ports are developing different Circular Economy (CE) port activities, but in isolation. To achieve a real switch to a Circular Economy, there is a need to actively involve the entire port sector in this new model of production and consumption.
Fundación Valenciaport is coordinating the LOOP-Ports – Circular Economy Network of Ports. Funded by EIT Climate-KIC, it is the first project analysing the CE approach for ports from the European Union. The aim is to facilitate the transition to CE in the sector, where products, materials and resources are maintained in the economy for as long as possible, and waste is minimised.
44 stakeholders from 14 EU countries are already engaged in the project: 32 Port Authorities, 4 Public Authorities, 3 Industry associations, 4 Port Associations (ESPO, BPO, Medports and Danske Havn) and 1 Environmental Organisation.
The main expected results from the project will be a complete mapping of EU ports characterisation on CE activities (more than 450 ports analysed and 200 CE activities identified); a report on key success stories; an in-depth analysis of the main barriers and enablers; ad-hoc training materials for the port sector; more than 25 workshops on CE with key stakeholders; and finally, 7 business models to be replicated and a tailored web tool showing the project results which is already live and listing concrete initiatives.
As part of its corporate strategy to become a sustainable development forerunner, the Port of Helsinki has put together and published an ambitious Carbon Neutral 2035 Program in 2019.
While the Port is pledging to be fully carbon neutral by 2035 at the latest, a strong focus of the program is also on incentivising and helping customers and stakeholders in their own carbon neutrality work:
The Port has committed to equipping 9 berths with new onshore power supply (OPS) capability, with the first new outlet becoming operational in 2020. Port of Helsinki has also joined forces with other Baltic ports to expand the OPS offering in the Baltic through EU funding.
Additional auto-mooring installations (pictured) will be added for speedier calls, and corresponding fuel savings with reduced speeds at sea
The Port is committed to supporting ship owners transitioning to biofuel use, by carrying part of the price difference for fuels used in harbor by early 2020. Incentive programs for vessels with low emissions are also being expanded on a continuous basis.
In addition to building solar plants on many buildings under Port ownership, the Port is looking into facilitating other harbor users’ transition by means of joint investments into solar panel infrastructure.
As part of the HNRY EU-funded project, the Port of Helsinki is future proofing its cargo harbor infrastructure to meet future port operators demand for their heavy machinery fleet charging.
The port is working closely with the City to reduce downtown congestion, recognising the need for practical solutions to the "last mile problem" and the need for removal of traffic from residential areas.
By committing to this action plan, the Port of Helsinki will cut harbor area CO2 emissions by over 30 %, despite the port’s own activities constituting only 5 % of overall emissions in the port and its surrounding area.
Voting has been launched online for all six WPSP categories and will close at midnight CET on 28 February.
To see all six categories and finalists in each, check out our competition area.
For those who would like to vote (maximum one session to vote for up to all six categories), please click here.
Contact details for the IAPH World Ports Sustainability Awards:
Antonis Michail, Technical Director – World Ports Sustainability Program