Tuesday, June 18, 2024

World first for ports sector as DP World invests £12 million in electric straddle carriers

DP World is investing £12m in eight new straddle carriers to service the ground-breaking new fourth berth at its London Gateway logistics hub.

The innovative new machines will be part of the first all-electric fleet in the world to go into commercial operation at a port and herald a major step forward for the sustainability of the global supply chain. Each straddle carrier, which moves containers handled by the quay cranes and then services onward forms of transport via road and rail, reduces carbon emissions by 54% compared with non-electric models, a figure that will increase over time as London Gateway continues to transition its electricity supply to zero carbon sources.

Andrew Bowen, UK Chief Operating Officer at DP World, said: “After three years of successful trials at London Gateway in an operational environment, we are delighted to announce that we have placed a £12m order for eight fully electric straddle carriers to service our new fourth berth. This news represents the culmination of four years of work in partnership with Kalmar, with whom we first converted a hybrid straddle carrier into a fully electric machine in 2019.”

“These straddle carriers are capable of operating for up to four hours without needing to be recharged and when required the battery can be charged in just 45 minutes. This latest investment in green innovation reinforces DP World’s commitment to mitigating the impacts of climate change by becoming a net zero logistics organisation by 2050.”

Mikko Mononen, Vice President, Sales Management, Horizontal Transportation, at Kalmar, added: “Our new high-energy battery technology has been developed in response to customer demand for a battery-based solution that is more closely aligned with their operating patterns. We have been working with DP World at London Gateway for many years on solutions to help them improve efficiency and reduce the impact of their operations on the environment. The terminal has been piloting a fully electric straddle carrier since 2018, and this project has served to demonstrate that fully electric machines are the optimal next step on the terminal’s decarbonisation journey.”

The straddle carriers will go into service next summer on completion of London Gateway’s £350m new fourth berth, where all major equipment is expected to be electric thereby making it one of the most sustainable ever built. It represents the latest in a series of investments which DP World has made to help green the UK supply chain, with its Southampton logistics hub reporting its most sustainable year ever in 2022 after eliminating fossil diesel from its operations entirely and transitioning to Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO). Using the renewable biodiesel is expected to cut carbon emissions from fleet and installations by 90%.

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