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218 cruise calls expected in 2023
The Port of Kiel expects another good season in 2023, resulting in 218 cruise calls, said its MD Dirk Claus in the morning of Jan 17, 2023, as part of a presentation reflecting on last year's results. It follows 2022's record-breaking 244 calls, which saw the port handle over 2.24m passengers, 836,000 of those from cruise vessels. The number of calls in 2019 was 37% less by comparison, numbering 178, and passenger volumes 4.1% lower. 2020 had been forecast to become a record season for Kiel, with 200 calls and 880,000 passengers, but aspirations were dashed owing to the pandemic. This year, a number of larger vessels are scheduled to arrive at Kiel on multiple occasions making the gross tonnage of arriving ships similar to 2022. For 2023, the choice of routes and destinations approached from Kiel will be slightly broader. Moving into the future, Claus expects Kiel to settle on between 200 and 250 cruise calls annually. According to the port, last year’s promising results were the result of ‘intense planning’ with international cruise operators. While 11 calls were cancelled owing to the conflict in Ukraine and the resulting loss of St Petersburg from itineraries, nine were newly added as a result of rerouting by operators. Looking ahead, there will be a strong focus on greener shipping with Claus hoping that between 60 and 100 calls can be supplied with green shore power this year. He stated that Kiel will continue to look at strengthening shore power in line with its corporate sustainability strategy to lower carbon emissions. Work on the new Ostuferhafen shore power plant is expected to conclude towards the end of this year, resulting in Kiel being able to offer shoreside connectivity at all its ferry and cruise terminals from 2024. Along with this €17m investment, a further €2m will be invested to install solar arrays. The systems, which will be fitted on roofs at Kiel Port, are intended to cover up to 30% of the port's electricity requirements in the long term. Kiel’s first call is expected to arrive April 7 with the river vessel 'Frederic Chopin'. The first cruise ship of the season, Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines’ 'Balmoral', will arrive a week later. The largest ships to call will be 'MSC Euribia' and 'AIDAnova'. At the other end of the scale, the 'Ocean Majesty' will visit Kiel on six occasions while chartered to Hansa Touristik. The vessel, which celebrates its 57th anniversary this year, is popular with the German source market. One of its calls is scheduled to occur on June 18 during the Kieler Woche sailing festival which will run from June 17-25. Traditionally, this marks the peak of the cruise season with this year no exception: 22 calls are expected by Kiel at the same time as the event takes place. While the highest number of calls is expected between mid-April and the end of September as usual, some ships will continue to call later in the year. 'AIDAnova'’s last departure is scheduled for November 4 whilst December 20 will see Phoenix Reisen's 'Amera' arrive at Kiel as part of a pre-Christmas itinerary. The season will draw to a close a few days later with the 'Spirit of Discovery' on December 29. Costa-, AIDA-, MSC- and TUI Cruises will again be the port's largest cruise customers. The majority of calls account for turnarounds serving the German-speaking source markets, but a number of transit calls will also take place, P&O Cruises’ Britannia, Swiss Ruby, Holland America Line’s 'Nieuw Statendam' and Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ 'Seven Seas Splendor' among them. As in previous years, the Ostuferhafen outside the city centre will be heavily utilised by MSC Cruises and most other cruise ships will arrive at the Ostseekai.
Kiel becoming Blue Port
The Port of Kiel has launched a three-step plan that puts the port's 'Blue Port' concept into concrete terms, as a framework of its effort to completely reduce all of its carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 2030. "The port will be climate-neutral by the end of this decade," noted Dr. Dirk Claus, Managing Director of Port of Kiel. The port's three-step plan envisages covering 60% of the energy requirements of ships calling at Kiel with green electricity as early as next year. This figure is expected to reach 80-90% by 2025, before climate neutrality is achieved for all activities of the German port in 2030, through a range of measures to supply port facilities with 100% climate-neutral green electricity that have already been implemented. The port is also planning to further decrease nitrogen oxides emissions. According to an environmental report, the Port of Kiel already avoided more than 6,200 tonnes of CO2 in 2020, while almost 18,800 tonnes were still emitted. The energy demand at the terminals has already been sustainably reduced by switching to economical LED technology and increasing energy efficiency, while photovoltaic systems provide around 290,000-kilowatt hours of solar energy every year. The port in the Baltic is also gradually converting its own vehicle fleet to electric drive and offers incentives to customers to promote the decarbonisation process. Moreover, the port has invested in on-shore power to reduce emissions. After the first system for shore-side power supply was connected to Norwegenkai in 2019, a second larger one was commissioned at Ostseekai in June, earlier this year. In the meantime, the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI) is funding the establishment of a digital test field in the port to make the processes at the freight terminals even more efficient. Operational processes will therefore be optimised and made more sustainable on the basis of a 5G campus network. In this way, climate-neutral growth in port handling is expected to be supported by innovative information technology (IT). Measures towards zero emissions by 2030 in the German port also include electrification of the vehicle fleet, such as industrial trucks, digitalisation of operational processes for increased efficiency, as well as tariff-based environmental discount as an incentive for climate-friendly transformation.
Stena inaugurates new shore power facility
The inauguration of the new shore power facility in Kiel on Dec 9, 2020, meant that Stena Line now have the possibility to connect 14 vessels at seven terminals with on-shore electricity during port stay. The new connection in Kiel will reduce the CO2 emissions from the two vessels Stena Scandinavica and Stena Germanica with 2,700 tonnes per year. In total Stena Line reduce its CO2 emissions with shore power with 13,000 tonnes per year. The new shore power facility in Kiel provides 100% green electricity, thus also avoiding NOX-, SOX- and particle emissions during the port stay of the 'Stena Germanica' and 'Stena Scandinavica'. Aside from Kiel, Stena Line have the possibility to connect to shore power supply at its two terminals in Göteborg, as well as in Karlskrona, Norvik, Trelleborg and Hoek van Holland, thus saving 13,000 t of CO2 per year in its network. Of the 36 vessels in the Stena Line fleet, 14 are now equipped with High Voltage Shore Connection systems (HVSC). “Shore power supply is important for us for two reasons: First, we want to have an immediate positive impact on the air quality in the ports we use. Secondly, we expect an even higher share of electrification in ports in the future – at cars, trucks, port vehicles and not the least at ships. With our battery and power bank projects, we develop our ferry services further in that direction constantly and we learn something new each day. In 2030 we expect to launch a 100 % battery powered and fossil free vessel”, say Niclas Mårtensson, CEO Stena Line and member of the Swedish Government Elelctrification Commission. Kiels mayor Dr. Ulf Kämpfer inaugurated the new façade of the shore power facility, which has been specially designed and illuminated. The inauguration marks the offizial start of the on-shore power supply for Stena Line in Kiel. The facility was co-funded by the state government of Schleswig-Holstein (8,9 m Euro) and the EU (1,26 m Euro). In addition, Germany´s federal government recently agreed on a political package to decrease the user prices for on-shore electricity significantly. “We are very grateful for the political support on various levels. The planned decrease of user prices for shore side electricity is an important step for the competitiveness of environmentally- and climate-friendly technologies in Northern Europe. At the same time, we are very happy about the continuous positive dialogue with our partners at Port of Kiel and the city of Kiel”, says Ron Gerlach, Managing Director, Stena Line Germany.News schreiben