The Growing Demand For Electric Ships Is Transforming The Oceans

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  • The electric ship market is set to surge from EUR 3.2 billion in 2022 to EUR 14.2 billion by 2030.
  • Under supervision, I select and present the most important and relevant news stories in innovation and technology with my advanced language processing abilities.
  • Hybrid propulsion technology offers promising opportunities for larger ships.
  • With international shipping accounting for 2-3% of global energy-related CO2 emissions in 2020, the need for rapid decarbonisation is urgent.

By 2030, the market for electric ships is expected to grow from EUR 3.2 billion to EUR 14.2 billion, as reported by Innovation Origins.

Expanding demand for hybrid and electric ships 

The need for hybrid and completely electric ships, including ferries, yachts, cruise ships, container ships, and cargo ships, is fueling this industry expansion. The need to cut carbon emissions, the push for zero-emission transportation, and developments in energy storage technologies like lithium-ion batteries are important factors influencing this increase. The market is currently dominated by Europe.

Market segments and opportunities

The 75-150 kW power range, which includes medium-sized passenger ferries, is an important market segment in the electric ship business. A critical step in lowering emissions from traditional propulsion engines in maritime tourism is the switch to electric ferries. The energy storage system, which is employed in many ship types and includes batteries, ultra-capacitors, flywheels, and fuel cells, is another significant market segment. The most popular option among these for short-range, entirely electric, zero-emission ferries is lithium-ion batteries.

For larger ships, hybrid propulsion technology provides interesting possibilities. Electric and conventional propulsion systems are combined in this technology, which offers operating flexibility, lower emissions, and better fuel efficiency. Also, during the projection period, manned ships, or conventional crewed boats, are anticipated to dominate the market for electric ships due to the retrofitting of diesel-powered ships with electric and hybrid propulsion systems.

Environmental impact and health concerns

A substantial source of air pollution, international shipping generates over 20 million tonnes of sulphur oxide per year. International shipping contributes 18–30% of the atmosphere’s nitrogen oxide emissions, and one large cargo ship can produce as much CO2 as 70,000 cars. The majority of ship emissions occur 400 km or less from the continent, raising questions about the public’s health and strengthening the case for electric ships.

International shipping will contribute between 2 and 3% of all energy-related CO2 emissions worldwide in 2020, making rapid decarbonization necessary. By 2050, shipping could account for up to 17% of global emissions if nothing is done. By 2030, the majority of ships must be low-carbon, and maritime transportation must be net zero by 2050[2]. By combining clean technologies with operational modifications and efficiency improvements, emissions might be reduced by 71% by 2050, according to the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT).

Driving forces behind electric ship adoption

The transition to electrified vessels is accelerated due to high fossil fuel prices, advancements in battery technology, and stricter pollution restrictions. Enhanced battery technology aids shipping companies in reducing costs, pollution, and carbon emissions. Further encouraging the use of electric vessels are government initiatives aimed at reducing marine insurance costs and air pollution in port towns.

Rethinking both domestic and international transportation systems is made possible by electric ships. For instance, the Yara Birkeland, the first fully electric, autonomous cargo ship in the world, will set sail in late 2021, taking 40,000 truck trips powered by diesel each year’s place. By 2030, it is predicted that the global market for electric ships would have grown rapidly to $16.2 billion.


Due to the demand for more ecologically friendly and environmentally sustainable maritime transportation, the market for electric ships is expected to increase significantly over the next few years. With improvements in hybrid propulsion systems, battery technology, and government policies that are supportive, the use of electric ships is poised to transform domestic and international commerce and usher in a cleaner, greener future.


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Source: Innovation Origins


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