On the Oslofjord, at the northern end of which lies the Norwegian capital Oslo, five electric ferries will be put into operation by 2022 – the first of these as early as 2021. The transport authority Ruter has awarded the contract to operate the electric ferries to the Norwegian provider Boreal Sjø.
Boreal Sjø had prevailed against four competitors in a tender. The contract between the company and the Norwegian public transport authority for the operation of the electric ferries runs until 2034 and will be built by the Norwegian company Multi Maritime, which has announced the first delivery for winter 2021/22. By summer 2022 at the latest, all five electric ferries are to be put into operation.
Boreal Sjø has not yet provided technical details on the ships’ electric propulsion. So far it is clear that the ferries, each 35 metres long and eight metres wide, can carry 350 passengers. In comparison, the current ferries have a capacity of 236 passengers. In addition, the ferries will have a diesel engine onboard, but this is only to be used as an emergency provision.
The new quintet will commute on the highly frequented routes between the pier at Oslo City Hall and the Oslofjord islands. The route is especially popular with locals and tourists during the summer months.
The background to the many electric ferries planned for Norway is the government’s plan to create the first zero-emission zone on water. Any CO2 emissions in the World Heritage Fjords are to be prevented “as quickly as technically possible and by 2026 at the latest”.
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