The UK Government has launched a £60m clean maritime competition to mark World Maritime Day. The Transport Secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan has announced the funding as part of the clean maritime demonstration competition (CMDC), a recent press release explains.
The competition is set to take place between April 2023 and March 2025, and it aims to promote innovation in green maritime technology. The government has set an ambitious target of carbon net zero emissions by 2050, and the shipping sector, including freight vessels, tankers, cruise ships, and port infrastructure, can play a big part in this.
The UK has a proud maritime history as an island nation, and now the aim is to encourage an environmentally friendly future in a way that will boost economic growth. The government has also announced the results of the second round of the CMDC competition, which was launched in May.
Innovate UK Executive Director for Net Zero, Mike Biddle, said: “The maritime sector is of crucial importance to the UK, with more than 95% of our trade running through the major ports that connect us to the global economy.”
He added: “As such an important part of the UK economy, significant change is needed to ensure that the sector adapts to new, clean technologies, reducing maritime emissions.”
“This latest, multi-year round of the government’s clean maritime demonstration competition builds on the success of the first 2 rounds, stimulating innovation to ensure the UK is at the forefront of this transition to make maritime greener.”
The CMDC competition is run by the UK SHORE unit (UK Shipping Office for Reducing Emissions), which as affiliated with the Department for Transport. The unit is working in partnership with industry, to take an integrated approach to tackling carbon emissions within the maritime infrastructure.
Ben Murray, CEO of Maritime UK, said: The maritime sector is one of Britain’s biggest industries and can play a major role in helping to grow our economy as we accelerate efforts to decarbonise the sector, delivering well-paid, high-quality jobs across the UK.”
He added: “This funding will help all parts of the sector to develop the solutions needed for maritime decarbonisation. Industry is rising to the challenge and co-investing with government to accelerate progress on clean maritime propulsion and infrastructure.”
“If we move quickly, the UK has a generational opportunity to lead globally, exporting cutting-edge solutions to maritime businesses across the world.”
One of the winning proposals from the second round of the competition is the concept of a green shipping corridor between two ports, with the ultimate aim of international collaboration. Plans are already well underway, with the establishment of the ACUA Ocean hydrogen-powered North Sea crossing study, and the Clean Tyne Shipping Corridor.
Other winning ideas include those put forward by Artemis Technologies, Tidal Transit, and ORE catapult. This involves the development of craft which travel above the surface of the water with the assistance of aerospace technology. This reduces drag by 90%, minimising the amount of fuel that is required.
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