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The CO2 reduction potential of shore-side electricity in Europe

Authors: Boris Stolz, Maximilian Held, Konstantinos Boulouchos

Abstract: Shore-side electricity can drastically reduce the emissions from fossil fuel-powered auxiliary engines of ships at berth. Data scarcity on the auxiliary power demand at berth has limited the scope and temporal resolution of previous studies to few ports and ships. We establish a novel method to estimate the auxiliary power demand at berth for 714 major ports in the European Economic Area (EEA) and the United Kingdom (UK). Therefore, emission report data from the Monitoring, Reporting and Verification scheme of the European Union and ship tracking data from the Automatic Identification System are combined.

Annual emissions of 3 Mt (/ 5 Mt) CO2 could be avoided if the auxiliary power demand at berth would be supplied from national grids (/ from CO2-neutral electricity). This equals an average reduction of overall shipping emissions by 2.2% (3.7%), and requires only 0.2% (6.4 TWh) of the current electricity generation capacity of the EEA and the UK. Using shore-side electricity from the grid can also contribute to substantial annual local air pollution reductions of 86,431 t NOx, 4,130 t SOx, 1,596 t PM10, 4,333 t CO, 94 t CH4, 4,818 t NMVOC, and 235 t N2O.

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