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Maritime Transport supports Laura Maersk voyage with HVO-powered train

Posted 09 Oct 2023

Maritime Transport was delighted to facilitate the historic arrival of Laura Maersk at DP World London Gateway recently – the world’s first methanol-enabled container vessel – delivering one of Maersk’s iconic rainbow containers to its Strategic Rail Freight Interchange (SRFI) at SEGRO Logistics Park East Midlands Gateway (EMG) via a HVO-powered freight train capable of reducing CO2 emissions by up to 90%.

The 2,100 TEU feeder vessel made her maiden call to London Gateway on Wednesday 27th September on the Baltic shipping route between Northern Europe and the Bay of Bothnia, followed by a second UK maiden call at the Port of Felixstowe on Friday 29th September. Two of Svitzer’s first biofueled tugs, Svitzer Thames and Svitzer Monach, were on hand to support its arrival.

Laura Maersk is an important step towards a long-term objective of gradually renewing the entire Maersk fleet to operate solely on green fuels. Maersk has 24 additional methanol vessels on order (capacity between 9,000 and 17,000 TEU) for delivery between 2024 and 2027 and a policy to only order new, owned vessels that come with a green fuel option.

Upon arrival, one of two rainbow containers on board were discharged at London Gateway and loaded onto Maritime Intermodal Six hauled by DB Cargo UK, arriving at EMG at 10:22 on Thursday 28th September. The final mile to Maersk’s newly-built, 685,000 sq ft warehousing facility was then carried out using an electric HGV, the first of its kind operated in the UK by Maersk. Maritime announced the completion of a major expansion at its SRFI at EMG in July – two years ahead of schedule – due to unprecedented demand. Works commenced in 2022 to double the terminal’s capacity for rail freight services by creating a further seven acres on the M1 side of the demise, adding two more tracks to take the count to five. A HGV yard has also been constructed to accommodate an additional 76 vehicles (capacity for 104 in total) with future provision for electric vehicle charging, and capacity to store an additional 3,000 TEU on site. The construction of a new, four-storey office/welfare building, similar to the one planned for Northampton Gateway open for business in 2024, is currently underway and will act as a national hub for Maritime’s Intermodal activities.

John Bailey, Managing Director – Intermodal, Maritime Transport:

‘Our successful collaboration with Maersk, culminating in the historic arrival of Laura Maersk at London Gateway, marks a defining moment in our shared journey towards a more sustainable supply chain, and demonstrates our commitment to offering more rail freight solutions to the market including diesel alternatives like HVO which all our services have the capability to run on. Rail freight is inherently eco-friendly and through continuous innovation, Maritime is leading the way in making it even greener for customers to decarbonise their operations.’

You can read more on our Intermodal offering here