Port-Liner Launches Electric Barges

The Port of Antwerp is preparing to welcome the world’s first fully electric and emission-free barges. A spokesperson for Port of Antwerp confirmed to The Loadstar it had added €200,000 to the EU €7m subsidy as part of a wider initiative to improve port efficiency. The Dutch company Port-Liner Port-Liner launch the first fully electric, emission-free barges in Europe.

The battery-powered ships have the capability to carry 280 containers. The first six of them are expected to remove 23,000 trucks from roads every year in the Netherlands and thus replace those with zero emission transport. The company Port Liner has been developing its vessels, however, they have developed a battery technology which houses batteries inside a container.

Chief executive of Port-Liner Ton van Meegen told The Loadstar:

There are some 7,300 inland vessels across Europe and more than 5,000 of those are owned by entrepreneurs in Belgium and the Netherlands. We can build upwards of 500 a year, but at that rate it would take some 50 years to get the industry operating on green energy.

What makes Port-Liner’s vessels unique is housing the battery in a container that can be stored on any vessel. This allows us to retrofit barges already in operation, which is a big boost for the industry’s green energy credentials,” said Mr van Meegen. “The containers are charged onshore by carbon-free energy provider Eneco, which sources solar power, windmills and renewables.