Heerema Marine Contractors’ large vessels such as the Sleipnir and Thialf will soon use the shore power installation on the Rozenburg Penisula in the port of Rotterdam. The ships will be able to switch off their diesel generators here to use power from wind turbines. Vopak Europoort, Eneco and the Port of Rotterdam Authority are now investigating whether the installation can also be used for Vopak.

This shore-based power installation will be commissioned in the first quarter of 2021.

Also read: Bakker Sliedrecht readies Heerema’s crane vessels for shore power


Vopak Europoort is located on the opposite side of the Calandkanaal of Heerema’s berth. It is therefore being investigated whether and how the installation that now stands on the peninsula can also be deployed for Vopak Europort terminal where large tankers berth. Connecting vessels of this kind to shore-based power poses several significant technical challenges and is therefore hardly done anywhere else in the world, according to the Port Authority.

It is hoped that the feasibility study that Vopak and Rotterdam Shore Power are currently conducting will find effective technical and commercial solutions to these challenges and that they may set an international standard.

The feasibility study currently being carried out by Vopak, Eneco and the Port of Rotterdam Authority is looking for technical and commercial solutions. They are investigating what is needed to realise it, what it costs and what it delivers. The study will be completed around the summer of 2021. Timo Spaninks, Managing Director Vopak Europoort, says ‘that this could lead to significant emission reductions in ports’.

Shore power

The Port of Rotterdam Authority and the City of Rotterdam presented a joint shore-based power strategy last year. Its objective is to carry out eight to ten shore power projects until 2025 and to apply shore power on a large scale in the port of Rotterdam after 2025.

A major advantage of shore power is that less nitrogen dioxide, particulate matter and CO2 are released into the atmosphere. This reduces air pollution and combats climate change. Shore power also has the potential to reduce the noise of ships’ engines.

Vopak terminal in Rotterdam.

Also read: Shore power project for Heerema’s Sleipnir and Thialf takes shape

This article first appeared in Dutch on Nieuwsblad Transport, a publication of SWZ|Maritime’s publishing partner Promedia.