Boluda Towage Europe cemented its commitment to providing more environmentally friendly towage in ports by signing a multi-year agreement in Belgium
Port of Zeebrugge signed the concession documents with Boluda extending towage services to ships using the port for another five years. Part of this agreement involves Boluda’s investment to reduce emissions from tugboats operating in the port.
This is an example of an emerging trend where ports require tug owners’ commitment in reducing harmful emissions in future concession and extension negotiations.
Boluda and Port of Zeebrugge authority signed the five-year concession extension on 17 September.
This enables efficient, smooth, and safe handling of shipping using this major Belgium port by eight powerful and modern tugboats certified with the highest fire-fighting standards and manned with a local crew. Going forward, they will also have some of the lowest emissions of any tugs operating in Europe.
Boluda is committed to upgrading this tugboat fleet to IMO Tier III emission standards.
It has already retrofitted Union Koala with a selective catalytic reactor (SCR) to remove NOx emissions and filters to prevent particulate matter. It will upgrade Union Panda this year with similar equipment to comply with IMO Tier III.
Two new Damen-designed tugs will also be added in December 2020 to modernise the fleet. VB Bolero and VB Rumba, are highly manoeuvrable azimuth stern drive (ASD) tugs with SCRs and filters installed for the IMO Tier III standards.
They were built by Damen to ASD 2813 design in Vietnam and retrofitted with abatement technology in the Netherlands.
Boluda Towage Europe provides towage services in major ports in Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands and the UK. It is part of Boluda Towage Group, a family business operating in 75 ports across the globe, with a fleet of more than 300 tugboats in 19 countries in Europe, Africa, Americas and the Indian Ocean.
Zeebrugge is a maritime crossroads with intra-European and intercontinental services, an LNG terminal, container port and roro terminal.
Green propulsion and smart towage operations will be discussed in depth during Riviera Maritime Media’s series of webinars and virtual conferences in Q4 2020 - use this link for more details and to register for these online events