This summer, electric barges will begin circulating the extensive Dutch waterway system. When Port-Liner roll-out the first fully electric, emission-free barges in Europe. These ‘Channel Teslas” will replace thousands of truck deliveries.

In August, the first fully-electric barge will start transporting goods around Europe’s channels. The cargo ships, built by Port-Liner, have been given the nickname “Channel Teslas’. They will initially be manned, but will in the long term be fully autonomous. The barges will go past the ports of Amsterdam, Antwerp and Rotterdam.

The magazine ‘The Loadstar’ reports that an operator in Antwerp has ordered five 50-meter barges, which, thanks to a pretty six-meter battery, will have a running time of 15 hours. Additional six are ordered, but then of a larger model that handle 280 containers.

Together, the barges will replace 23,000 diesel trucks. But the total of eleven ordered barges are just a drop in the ocean.

“There are around 7,300 barges in Europe and more than 5,000 of these are owned by contractors in Belgium and the Netherlands. We can build up to 500 a year, but still it will take 50 years before the industry becomes green, “

– Ton van Meeken, CEO of Port-Liner.

Something that makes the Port-Liners barges unique is the battery design housed in containers – which allows the same container to move around between ships and be assembled in different constellations, like lego.

“It allows us to install them on existing barges, which is an incredible boost for the industry. The containers are loaded on the quayside of the carbon-free energy partner Eneco, “

– Ton Van Meeken to The Loadstar.