Norway rediscovers a new autonomous green shipping champion

Renewable energy sources have always been a major deciding factor whenever it comes to Norway and it's policies. The country is a heavy producer of renewable energy because of hydropower and wind power. The country is soon following suit in the ocean as well.

In a contract signed by Norway's Kongsberg and Massterly (a joint venture by Kongsberg and Wilhemsen) with Norway's leading grocery distributor ASKO, two new vessels will be equipped with autonomous technology. Kongsberg will also look after the company's operations at sea. This is a big boost for the growth of sustainable maritime operations in Norway since funding for the project is being done mostly by local Norwegian MNCs.

The fully electric ships will replace 2 million kilometres of truck transport, saving 5,000 tonnes of CO2 every year. This solution is cost-effective, sustainable and will remove trucks from a heavily trafficked road.

The vessels, which are due to be delivered early in 2022, have been designed by Norwegian vessel designer Naval Dynamics and will be constructed at the state-owned Cochin Shipyard in India.

Currently, ASKO uses almost 800 trucks daily to transport cargo throughout the entire nation. The new RoRos will replace the current solution with a zero-emission transport alternative.

European proponents of autonomous shipping were stunned ever since the decision was taken in May to put the Yara Birkeland containership project on hold. At that moment, they could do nothing but stare as East Asia took huge strides in realizing the green autonomous shipping dream. This breathes fresh life in the European chapter of the same.

With one landmark Norwegian autonomous shipping project hitting the skids this year, a new pioneering maritime vision has emerged from the Scandinavian nation in the shape of a futuristic-looking RoRo.

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