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UK maritime minister Robert Courts praises Southampton’s green efforts

AID Cruises' Aidacosma connects to shore power at the Port of Southampton; other cruise ships will follow suit through 2022
Robert Courts, the UK's under-secretary of state at the department for transport who oversees aviation, maritime and security, praised the Port of Southampton for its cruise ship shore power facilities.

Cruise vessels can plug in at the Horizon Cruise Terminal and Mayflower Cruise Terminal with several operators already commissioning the UK’s first shore power facility for this year.   

Sustainable shipping in the UK

Said Courts, ‘Yet another significant milestone in the journey to decarbonising the maritime sector. 

‘As we work towards building a green maritime legacy, it’s amazing to see ports such as ABP’s Port of Southampton leading by example to utilise clean maritime technologies for a greener port and better air quality. They’ve done a brilliant job with their shore power facility for cruise ships.’

Last year, the UK government launched its Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition, pledging £23m to fund more than 55 decarbonisation projects. 

Added Rebekah Keeler, head of cruise, Associated British Ports, ‘We are delighted to have reached this exciting milestone and we are looking forward to working with multiple cruise lines this year as they plug in for zero emissions at berth and make tangible progress towards their own decarbonisation goals. 

‘A massive thank you to our teams, partners and customers for all their work so far.’ 

Horizon and Mayflower cruise terminals

ABP Southampton announced it was investing in shore power for its Horizon Cruise Terminal and Mayflower Cruise Terminal in 2019 and 2021, respectively, with Associated British Ports working with main contractor Powercon to implement the project.

The total cost of the work to install shore power was £9m, supported by a grant from the Solent Local Growth Deal and arranged through the Solent Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) whose chair Rachael Randall remarked, ‘At the LEP, we're committed to pioneering approaches to climate change adaptation and decarbonisation so it's fantastic to see the results of our contribution to this project - the first major commercial berth and cruise port to use plug in technology in the UK, resulting in a reduction of CO2 emissions while improving local air quality.’