Greener Ferries – The Path Towards Green Ferry Operations

The Danish Government’s target to be carbon neutral by 2050 and the new climate Law to cut emissions 70% by 2030, has put pressure on the blue Denmark to start transitioning to greener ferry operations.

The Danish Ministry of Transport commissioned COWI to deliver a report on promoting and implementing green initiatives for Danish ferry operations, which produced some interesting conclusions.

Hear some of these presented, along with the latest from Danish ship designers and ferry operators themselves on several of these possibilities, including green energy efficiency initiatives already implemented to ongoing research and innovation projects. The presentations will share thoughts on how to reach this zero emission goal.


  • Introduction and welcome by Alexander Bjørn Kleiman - Chairman - IDA Maritim, Manager - Maritime Projects, DBI – The Danish Institute of Fire and Security Technology
  • Ferry investigation by COWI for the Danish Ministry of Transport by Ole Kveiborg, Market Director, COWI
    What are the economic, environmental and technical possibilities of changing Danish ferries to green alternatives? In this study a general analytical model is developed. The model includes estimation of CAPEX and OPEX of retrofitting and new ferries using battery electric, diesel (HVO) and bio-methanol propulsion. It further assesses the costs to establish the relevant land-based refueling (recharging) infrastructure. The model can assess the environmental and climate related impacts of changing the ferries and it calculates the socioeconomic effects.
  • Hydrogen Ferries on Limfjorden by Ulrik Tander, Head of Machinery/Senior Naval Architect, B.Sc, OSK-ShipTech
    Presentation of the feasibility study on M/F Feggesund and M/F Mjølner-Fur.The technical challenges we found when retrofitting a ferry from diesel to hydrogen and how they were met.
    Electricity and hydrogen are true emission free fuels, if the electricity is produced by wind turbines. With today available technology, Municipalities can reduce their CO2 emissions up to 25%, only by retrofitting their ferry to hydrogen.
    Hydrogen is a possible fuel for minor domestic ferries, both for newbuildings and retrofit projects. The supply chain is under development and from 2022, large scale production is available.
  • Green Ferries is the standard of today by John Wind, sales manager, Danfoss Editron
    Presentation of electrification principles used today: 1) Full electric solution, 2) serial hybrid solution and 3) parallel hybrid solution.
    Electrification possibilities in near future: Batteries, Hydrogen etc. will also be presented. Case which will be described: M/F Bitten Clausen ferry incl. smart charging principle
  • ECOPRODIGI by Marie Lützen and Søren Vinther Hansen, SDU Mechanical Engineering
    When designing a ferry, the energy efficiency is taken into considerations through an energy-efficient hull design, optimized hotel load efficiency and focus on energy-efficient engines at the right engine layout – but awareness to the daily operation is very important and a significant reduction in fuel consumption can be achieved through changes in the operational practices.
    To establish a successful system for energy efficient operation, it is necessary to have equipment for evaluating the energy consumption and to be able to identify and evaluate energy-saving and cost-effective initiatives, monitoring systems are therefore a must. The presented study shows the results of analyses of more than one year of logged data from operations of an older small island ferry. The preliminary results indicate that via digital decision support and effective operations support easily can reduce fuel consumption and emissions with 10-20 %. The analysis is performed as part of the EU Funded project ECOPRODIGI. The project increases eco-efficiency in the Baltic Sea region maritime sector by creating and piloting digital solutions in close cooperation between industry end-users and research organizations.
  • Questions & Answers and Closing by Alexander Bjørn Kleiman, Chairman - IDA Maritim
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