Implementation of low carbon technology in public water transport | 2 Mers Seas Zeeën


Implementation of low carbon technology in public water transport

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Low-Carbon technologies


Water busses, water shuttles, ferries, river cruise ships are more and more integrated in mobility networks for commuting and leisure tourism, especially in France, the Netherlands, Belgium and the UK, where a dense network of navigable inland waterways connects cities with the suburbs. Connecting water transport networks with on land mobility networks in well developed ‘blue hubs’ is considered as one of the measures to reach a higher degree of modal split. Especially combining cycling with boating to cross a river can shorten a route considerably. When it is developed as a competitive alternative it can diminish car use and traffic jams through tunnels and over bridges. The measurement is interesting to develop further but the reverse side is that most public transport vessels and river cruise ships are not sustainable! They are still equipped with engines running on diesel fuel (euronorm 1 and 2) and very polluting. Partly because of the expensive diesel fuel the exploitation costs are high and not competitive. Especially as water transport is often not considered as ‘public transport’ and supported by the government, but exploited by the waterway management company or a private water transport provider.

Creation date: 11/09/2018

Bloc onglets

Bloc 1

Overall objective

The project GreenShips wants to 1. implement low carbon technology in public water transport vessels and river cruise ships, starting from research on & learning from existing stand alone pilots and upgrade those to a broader implementation scale through transnational cooperation, 2. develop a feasible & competitive fleet exploitation model for water transport providers in the 2 Seas Region.

Bloc 2


to discuss with the partners

Bloc 3

Expected result

to discuss with the partners for the region Scheldeland: the transformation of the existing ferry boats to more sustainable hybrid models within a new exploitation model

Bloc 4

Cross-border added-value

The VNF conference in Bordeaux (1-2 feb 2018) has presented at least 2 cases of a succesful implementation of low carbon technology in rivercruiseships through a public-private partnership; these stand alone projects can be used as inspiring examples for further research and implementation to transform the public water transport vessels on a broader scale in the 2Seas region. All 2Seas countries are exploring the possibilities to develop a water transport network on inland waterways connecting suburban regions with cities but are confronted by the high costs of quay infrastructure and the transformation of the diesel vessels to hybrid vessels. Transnational cooperation is a condition to upgrade the existing expertise in the different countries to a higher scale and a higher degree of implementation as most of the countries are connected by their waterways. Vessels sailing in Belgium are mostly build by shipbuilder in the Netherlands so cooperation between those countries f.e. is already essentiel.