Bilbao Port Authority’s €51.8 mill BilbOPS project, which aims to deploy OPS technology based on renewable energy – wind, solar, wave, via 11 connection points on seven quays – is underway.
It is due to be operational by 2025, according to a post on Cruise Europe’s website.
The investment amounts to €47.5 mill, 30% (€14.2 mill) of which is co-funded by the EC through the CEF Transport 2021/2027 programme. The project has also secured a €5 mill grant for the new A5 quay through the Recovery and Resilience Facility.
In addition, the port will offer alternative fuel services from Petronor, including hydrogen and an e-fuel plant. LNG will also be available and there will be a floating mobile OPS for a wider reach. There will also be 48 charging stations for electric cars.
The project aims for a direct improvement on the quality of life for 125,000 citizens, 116,000 passengers and 10,000 workers through better air quality – greenhouse gas emissions will be reduced by 40% – and reduced noise and vibration levels.
“This is further proof of the progress and commitment of the port to providing an optimum service for cruise ships,” said Gloria Frau, Port of Bilbao Cruise Manager, adding: “This strategic investment positions the Port of Bilbao at the forefront of the network of European ports deploying this sustainable technology at the service of its customers, and in line with the EU ‘Fit For 55’ objectives.”
The 2023 season began on April with the arrival of Princess Cruises’ ‘Sky Princess’, which will call four times this year.
Around 80 calls are expected with Ambassador Cruise Line arriving for the first time and 14 cruise ships making inaugural calls to the Spanish port.