UK Government provides £33 million boost to green ports and ships


The UK Maritime Minister, Lord Davies, has announced the winners of £33 million of Government funding to develop green technologies for ports and ships – accelerating the UK’s race to decarbonise the sector while supporting jobs in coastal communities across the country, helping grow the economy in the long term.

The £33 million has been awarded to 33 projects across all twelve regions of the UK to deliver demonstrations, factory trials and feasibility studies. These initiatives position UK as a leader in emerging clean maritime technologies, fostering sustainable high-skilled jobs across the country and boosting coastal economies.

The funding comes from the fourth round of the government’s Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition (CMDC4), which focuses on developing a range of clean maritime technologies including electric, hydrogen, ammonia, methanol, wind power and more.

Lord Davies (pictured) visited two of the winning organisations, Aqua SuperPower and RS Marine Group, in Southampton to see their pioneering network of electric chargepoints and electric vessels in action. Thanks to CMDC4, these two winners will work together to build on their existing electric infrastructure to provide electricity back to ports, harbours and the grid, when the vessels are not in use.

Maritime Minister Lord Davies said: “Unlocking a sustainable maritime sector and the economic growth it provides relies on cutting edge technology to propel it to the next level. The voyage to sustainability demands bold investments to not just deliver greener shipping but highly skilled jobs across the UK.

“Today, we witnessed a first-hand glimpse into the transformative solutions that can help shape the future landscape of the maritime industry and support jobs in coastal communities.”
Government funding is a crucial driving force for cutting edge technology, inspiring investors to engage in pilot incentives. CMDC4 builds on three successful previous rounds, which allocated over £95m to 105 projects and leveraged over £45m private investment.

The continued demand for funding underscores the industry’s strong interest in clean maritime investment. This support has also fostered partnership between the Government and the private sector – paving the way for exciting innovations that will decarbonise the maritime industry.
Lesley Robinson CEO of British Marine said: “British Marine is proud to celebrate the achievements of our members who are leading the way in sustainable maritime innovation and are among the beneficiaries of the government’s £33 million investment in green maritime technology.
“This significant funding is just one way in which Government can help accelerate our industry’s journey to net-zero emissions and marks a new era in maritime history. Many of our members are pioneering electric vessels and charging ports, in-turn, contributing to environmental sustainability, job creation, and the UK’s levelling up agenda. We’re excited to witness this pivotal shift towards a cleaner, more prosperous maritime future.”

Mike Biddle, Innovate UK Executive Director for Net Zero said: “The maritime sector continues to demonstrate a keen appetite for decarbonisation which is highlighted by the 33 winning projects of the Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition Round 4.

“Today’s announcement shows UK industry is embracing research and development as a solution to a global industry-wide problem and I’m inspired by the ambition of our maritime innovators.

“The CMDC4 projects will build upon the proven success of previous rounds where DfT and Innovate UK have worked in partnership to show the UK is a leading voice in maritime’s green transition.”
The latest funding comes from the wider £206 million UK Shipping Office for Reducing Emissions (UK SHORE) programme, announced in March 2022.