Shore Power for Cruise Ships – a Canadian First

METRO VANCOUVER, Aug. 31 /CNW/ – Port Metro Vancouver today unveiled its new shore power facility at the Canada Place cruise ship terminal. The port is the first to install shore power for cruise ships, and only the third in the world to do so.

The shore power installation at the home port of the Vancouver-Alaska cruise – one of the world’s most popular cruises – is the result of a $9-million cooperative initiative between the Government of Canada, the British Columbia Ministry of Transportation, Holland America Line, Princess Cruises, BC Hydro and Port Metro Vancouver. Representatives from each of the participating organizations gathered at Canada Place today to formally launch the project.

Shore power is a highly effective way to reduce marine diesel air emissions by enabling ships to shut down their engines and connect to BC Hydro’s electrical grid in order to provide necessary power while docked.

“This project will significantly improve local air quality by reducing air emissions from cruise ships in downtown Vancouver throughout the cruise ship season,” said Andrew Saxton, Parliamentary Secretary to the President of the Treasury Board and Member of Parliament for North Vancouver. “It is an excellent example of how our government is working with our partners to invest in infrastructure projects that improve our quality of life and it clearly demonstrates how we can both protect the environment and stimulate the economy.”

“Shore power in British Columbia sets a new transportation and energy standard by being the first of its kind in Canada,” said British Columbia’s Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, Blair Lekstrom. “This will help contribute to better air quality in Vancouver and the Lower Fraser Valley airshed, and will bring us closer to our government’s goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by one-third by 2020.”

“We are fortunate to have a reliable system of clean hydroelectricity in our province and we strive to provide our customers with energy solutions that are environmentally and socially responsible,” said Bev Van Ruyven, executive vice-president, Customer Care and Conservation, BC Hydro. “BC Hydro is pleased to help the port power cruise ships in an environmentally friendly way and realize the benefits of clean energy.”

Princess Cruises and Holland America Line have pioneered this technology within the cruise industry. Both have invested significantly in outfitting their fleet with onboard shore power equipment currently on nine Princess Cruises ships and six Holland America Line ships. Four Princess ships and one Holland America ship will use shore power in Vancouver during the 2009 Alaska season.

“We’ve been committed to shore power for many years, so we’re pleased we can now ‘plug in’ our ships at Port Metro Vancouver,” said Charlie Ball, senior vice president of Princess Cruises. “Because we know that communities care about air emissions, this is a way we can do our part to benefit the air quality in Vancouver.”

“Holland America Line is committed to responsible environmental practices and we are pleased to work with Port Metro Vancouver on the utilization of shore power,” said Stein Kruse, Holland America Line’s president and chief executive officer. “This is a meaningful way to provide clean energy to cruise ships and reduce emissions in the community.”

Planning for the Canada Place project began in 2005. Shore power-enabled cruise ships are now able to connect to the system at both the east and west berths at Canada Place.

“Port Metro Vancouver is committed to conducting operations in a sustainable manner that safeguards and promotes protection of the environment, and the Shore Power initiative exemplifies that,” said Robin Silvester, president and chief executive officer, Port Metro Vancouver. “This is a truly cooperative venture and a very positive outcome.”

Port Metro Vancouver is Canada’s largest port. Port activities generate 132,700 total jobs across Canada and $10.5 billion in gross domestic product. The port is hosting 264 cruise ship visits in 2009. Each cruise ship that docks in Vancouver contributes $2 million to the local economy.


For further information, contact:

Chris Day, Press Secretary, Office of Canada’s Transport Minister John Baird, Ottawa, (613) 991-0700;

Media Relations, Transport Canada, Ottawa, (613) 993-0055;

Donna Howes, Communications Manager, Western Economic Diversification Canada, (604) 666-1318, Email:;

Baljinder Jacques, Public Affairs Officer, B.C. Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, (250) 387-5798, Email:;

Anne McMullin, Director, Corporate Communications and Public Affairs, Port Metro Vancouver, (604) 665-9069, Email:;

Simi Heer, Media Relations, BC Hydro, (604) 623-3963, Email:


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