The UK’s race to decarbonise the maritime sector has been given another vital boost, with £60 million in government funding distributed to innovative companies nationwide developing futuristic green technology.
For the first time, the UK government is funding the development of new clean maritime technology across a 2-year period. Companies in 12 regions around the UK will benefit from the cash, generating highly skilled jobs across the nation and positioning the UK as a world leader in green solutions.
The Transport Secretary, Mark Harper, visited Artemis Technologies in Belfast on Tuesday 14 February to see some of the tech in action.
Using technologies adapted from the worlds of high-performance yacht racing, motorsports and aerospace, the company is developing vessels that effectively ‘fly’ above the water surface. The vessels produce zero emissions when foiling and offer energy savings of up to 90% resulting in significantly lower operating and maintenance costs.
Artemis Technologies will now use the funding to help take their invention to the seas on a commercial scale.
Transport Secretary Mark Harper said: “Our maritime sector imports 95% of goods into the UK and contributes £116 billion to our economy – more than both aviation and rail combined. With growing the economy one of the government’s top priorities, we must continue our efforts to ensure the UK remains a pioneer in cutting-edge clean maritime solutions. The funding we’re awarding today will help to do just that, bringing emission-free concepts to life and fuelling innovation.”
The funding comes from the third round of the government’s Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition (CMDC3), which focuses on developing a range of clean maritime technologies including hydrogen, ammonia, electric and wind power.
During the 2-year investment period, successful companies will be required to demonstrate that their projects will work in the real world, helping them to progress towards becoming an everyday reality.
CEO at Artemis Technologies Dr Iain Percy OBE said: “The clean maritime demonstration competition is key to unlocking those innovations across the region that will transport the UK towards a more sustainable future and we are thrilled that it has once again recognised the integral role Artemis Technologies can play. With this latest round of funding, we are emboldened to advance our green technology projects, develop world-leading clean vessels for our seas, and continue on our mission to lead the decarbonisation of maritime.”
Other winners include a project led by Collins River Enterprises Limited to build and test a brand new fully electric ferry on the River Thames between Canary Wharf and Rotherhithe, building on research funded through the first round of the CMDC.
Another project led by AceOn Battery Solar Technology Ltd will develop hydrogen-powered vessels to transfer crew to wind farms off the northeast coast of England from the Port of Blyth.
WingTek are also receiving CMDC3 funding to develop and demonstrate 2 full-sized prototypes of wind-assisted ships with high tech sails, which will reduce the amount of fuel used by the vessels as well as the emissions they produce.
CEO of the UK Chamber of Shipping Sarah Treseder said: “Congratulations to all the successful bids, which cover a wide range of technologies and aspects of shipping. The UK Chamber of Shipping is committed to net zero by 2050. This funding is an important milestone in ensuring we continue to work together to achieve this important target and will help us complete the journey from theory to reality for zero emission shipping.”
Today’s funding comes from the wider £206 million UK Shipping Office for Reducing Emissions (UK SHORE) scheme, announced in March 2022.
The CMDC is one of the many initiatives from UK SHORE to fund green technology. Last week the government launched the Zero Emission Vessels and Infrastructure competition to support projects in the latter stages of development, and the Clean Maritime Research Hub – aimed at the early science and research behind green technology.