Hurtigruten Makes Huge Investment in Batteries and Biofuel

Richard With

Batteries, shore power and biofuel are at the core of Hurtigruten Group’s large-scale green upgrade of the entire fleet of Hurtigruten Norwegian Coastal Express ships, according to a press release.

The result: CO2 emissions will be reduced by least 25 percent and NOx emissions cut by 80 percent, the company said, as all seven Hurtigruten Norwegian Coastal Express ships will undergo significant green upgrades by 2023.

"We are combining the best available technical solutions and cutting CO2 emissions along the Norwegian coast with at least a quarter. And most importantly, we are laying the foundation for introducing new and even more efficient environmental solutions as they are developed," said Hurtigruten Norwegian Coastal Express CEO Hedda Felin.

The ships will be upgraded using a combination of technologies and solutions specially adapted for each individual ship.

All ships have already been fitted with shore power plugs.

Three ships - the MS Richard With, MS Nordlys and MS Kong Harald - will undergo a full-fledged transformation to battery-hybrid power, with installation of new low-emission engines and large battery packs.

"This is one of the largest environmental vessel upgrade projects that has been done in Europe. For us, it’s rewarding to work with a company which shares our ambitious approach to technology and environmental issues. The green upgrades of Hurtigruten Norwegian Coastal Express’ ships represent a sustainable choice for their existing fleet," said President Egil Haugsdal of Kongsberg Maritime (KM), which has been awarded the three-ship hybrid conversion contract.

KM has partnered with Norway’s Myklebust yard for the first battery-hybrid upgrade.

"Our goal is to operate all our ships and all our cruises completely emission-free. While we get one step closer day-by-day, we cannot sit idle and wait for the technology to be in place. We are working closely with our partners do drive change, move boundaries while we at the same time utilize the best solutions available already today," added Hurtigruten Group CEO Daniel Skjeldam.

To ensure immediate effect of the green upgrade program already as Hurtigruten Norwegian Coastal Express returns all seven ships to operation this summer, certified biofuel will be introduced across the fleet.

Hurtigruten Expeditions will also start trials with biofuel on selected ships and selected itineraries in 2021.


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