Shore to ship power connection cuts emissions in the Port of Toulon

Shore to ship power connection cuts emissions in the Port of Toulon

The French Port of Toulon handles over 1.6 million ferry and cruise passengers annually. It provides direct access to the city to approximately 1,300 ferries and cruise vessels each year – but these vehicles need power. The traditional solution is for the vessels to run their diesel engines to generate power, but this creates emissions and dirties the port’s air.  

The Port of Toulon is governed by the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur (Région Sud PACA), which aims to reduce emissions with a plan for “zero-smoke stopovers” by providing electricity to ships in port. Shore to ship power connections allow ships to turn off diesel generators during port calls. This effort will also involve electrifying ports in Marseille and Nice.  

The port’s operators worked with an ABB-led consortium to plan and execute a turnkey project for delivery in 2023. It will be able to deliver power to all the ferries at the port simultaneously, or to one cruise ship. Each vessel will have access to 50 and 60 hertz power connections for maximum compatibility.  

The shore to ship power supply will automatically adjust the energy mix to serve the vessels, combining on-site solar, lithium battery storage, and grid access. It is designed to integrate additional technologies, such as fuel cells, in the future.  

“Toulon is the first Mediterranean port to supply power to all of its docks. This is an innovative project built on an intelligent energy flow management system with a unique energy mix. With the support of ABB as well as the Région Sud PACA and our partners, we are significantly improving air quality in the port, while maintaining business activity,” says Hubert Falco, President of the Toulon Provence Méditerranée Metropolis. 

He adds: “The shore to ship power connection will eliminate more than 80 percent of pollutant emissions. It will also save 9,000 hours of vessels running on diesel annually. For the ferry activity in the city of Toulon alone, this adds up to a reduction in sulfur emissions equivalent to those of 50,000 cars in a year.”  

“We are honored to have been selected by Toulon Provence Méditerranée Metropolis to work on this innovative project,” said Jyri Jusslin, Head of Service, ABB Marine & Ports. “We commend the Toulon authorities for grasping this opportunity. It sets a course for a more sustainable future with smart systems that already exist today.”