BC Ferries

Energy Savings With SeaForward

by BC Ferries

Photo courtesy of BC Ferries

A recent pilot project has reduced the Queen of Oak Bay’s ship services energy consumption by the equivalent of 30 sailings from Horseshoe Bay to Departure Bay. Energy efficiency measures like this one can be incorporated into new build vessels.

The process initially started in 2013 with an audit to assess electrical energy usage. In a follow-up project, BC Ferries partnered in the development and demonstration of an energy-optimization software tool. This software was deployed to collect and manage electricity data for more than 20 areas on board the ship and provided generator metrics as well. The benefits of this initiative were a reduction in fuel consumption, cost and associated carbon emissions, as well as improved asset life and reduced maintenance costs.

Consumption reductions from the above initiatives are being monitored in the new software and are on target for a reduction of more than 272 tonnes of CO2 emissions, which is equivalent to removing approximately 57 passenger vehicles per year. Similar measures will be rolled out to other existing vessels where possible.

This project was possible with the support of Transport Canada and is a joint initiative with 3GA Marine, Clearlead Consulting and Panevo Services. The objective was to develop and demonstrate a Ship Service Energy Optimization software tool that would provide an audit function to determine major ship service power consumers and enable an optimization function from both a technological and operational perspective, thereby reducing emissions.

“BC Ferries is committed to safeguarding the environment, as well as finding new ways to improve the sustainability of our operations,” said Mark Wilson, BC Ferries’ Vice President of Engineering. “Thanks to the Transport Canada-sponsored initiative and deployment of the new energy software, not only can we actively measure energy usage, we can also put control variables in place across the system to ensure savings.”

BC Ferries’ Environment and shipboard Engineering teams led this energy conservation initiative, which falls within Sustainable Operations under BC Ferries’ SeaForward program. The program, which brings together the company’s existing environmental activities, conservation efforts, community investments and new sustainability endeavours, was recently announced. SeaForward’s goal is to reduce BC Ferries’ environmental footprint, improve the sustainability of our operations and support coastal communities.