Green initiatives at the Port of Hirtshals

An electricity consumption of around 200,000 fewer kilowatt-hours in the first half of 2020, compared to the same period in 2019, speaks its own clear language. The Port of Hirtshals' installation of the digital registration and invoicing system ProPower has, in addition to significantly reducing the consumption of the vessels in the port, also meant a reduction in the port's total electricity consumption of 10%.

In the period 2017-2019, the Port of Hirtshals has replaced old and obsolete power supplies in the western part of the port with 38 new power supplies in concrete. At the same time, a digital system for registration of electricity consumption has been installed. Thus, the port knows exactly when each vessel consumes electricity, and the vessels know exactly how much electricity they consume while in port. This has meant that unregistered consumption due to old, obsolete power supplies and forgetfulness is becoming a thing of the past.

One of the new power supplies in concrete

At the Port of Hirtshals, there is no doubt that the installation of the ProPower system in the western part of the port has given the shipowners a completely new awareness of their power consumption. It has suddenly become very visible how much electricity each vessel consumes as the power consumption can be monitored online.

- In Port control, we are very happy to assist the fishermen in finding savings. We already have a few cases where we have helped to find and afterwards remove power guzzlers that have consumed electricity to no avail. It has been very satisfying, says Port officer Tommy Grønkjær, who has been involved throughout the entire installation and commissioning process.

One of the new power supplies in concrete

For the Port of Hirtshals, the investment in the ProPower system has had two main objectives. On the one hand, it has been important for the port to eliminate unregistered consumption, so that each vessel pays for the electricity it actually consumes, and on the other hand, the port has emphasised reducing the climate impact of the port area in accordance with the port's support of the UN's 17 Sustainable Development Goals.

- It has been interesting to see a direct effect in the form of a lower power consumption as well as a reduced climate impact. At the same time, it has be positive to note the arisen awareness among the shipowners who now turn off the equipment on board that consumes unnecessary power, says Marketing manager at the Port of Hirtshals Ditte G. Sørensen who is responsible for the port's work with the UN's 17 Sustainable Development Goals.

As a next step, the Port of Hirtshals wishes to renew the existing onshore power supply in the western part of the port. However, this is a significantly more complex process, as the large ships that call this part of the port have completely different requirements for the supplied power. Over the coming year, the port will therefore initiate an analysis which shall provide knowledge about the needed, future installations and investments. This work must also consider the EU's climate objectives agreed in the "European Green Deal" which will probably require all European ports to be able to supply onshore power to ships in port from 2030.