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News - 28/07/23

Electric Waves

Cowes Harbour Charges Ahead with three Aqua superPower Marine Fast Charge Stations

Cowes Harbour Commission is making headlines in the maritime world with the inauguration of three cutting-edge Aqua superPower marine fast charge stations, bringing the electrifying future of boating to the Isle of Wight. The ribbon-cutting ceremony, carried out by Dr Bob Seely MBE MP for the Isle of Wight, underscores the significance of these installations in Cowes Harbour’s drive to reduce its carbon footprint and lead the charge in sustainable boating.

In a momentous stride towards zero-emissions boating on the Isle of Wight, Cowes Harbour Commission decided to embrace electric boating as part of its visionary Carbon Management Plan. Cowes, renowned globally as a yachting hub and home to the prestigious sailing event bearing its name, stands as one of the United Kingdom’s most beloved boating destinations. With the addition of three state-of-the-art installations, Cowes Harbour Commission wholeheartedly aligns with the government’s Maritime 2050 and Clean Maritime Plan, spearheading the reduction of carbon emissions and propelling the island towards a cleaner, greener future of electric boating.

Dr Bob Seely MBE MP said, “This new technology aligns with the government’s Clean Maritime Plan which aims to tackle air pollutants and greenhouse gas emissions while securing clean growth opportunities for the UK. It all helps to make our environment cleaner and safer.

“These specialised marine fast chargers from Aqua superPower demonstrate the technology’s potential, and I was delighted to take test rides with various UK electric boat builders to gain insight into how they operate and how they can be deployed in leisure and commercial settings.

“I commend Cowes Harbour for taking proactive steps to create future-proof infrastructure, connecting our island with the electric boat charging corridor in the Solent and along the south coast. Well done to all involved.”

Gary Hall, CEO of Cowes Harbour Commission, emphasised, “Our Carbon Management Plan led us to explore the possibility of introducing electric boat chargers, providing essential infrastructure for boat owners willing to invest in electric vessels. Thanks to Aqua superPower and their expert team, we have now installed two chargers on Trinity Landing and another at Shepards Marina. Today, we celebrate the live electric marine ecosystem with three leading UK electric boat builders, RS Electric, Vita, and Optima. We even had the pleasure of using a Vita boat as a support vessel during Cowes Week, proving its outstanding capabilities with a full day’s operation on a single charge. Within the next year, our goal is to integrate electric boats seamlessly into Cowes Harbour.”

Echoing Gary Hall’s enthusiasm, Alex Bamberg, CEO of Aqua superPower, remarked, “I extend my gratitude to Gary Hall and Cowes Harbour Commission for leading the decarbonisation movement with such foresight. Aqua superPower is determined to invest in and establish charging corridors along the south coast, with Cowes being a pivotal point in boating activity. As the world’s attention turns to the upcoming Cowes Week event, we are honoured to work with Cowes Harbour Commission, setting the example of bringing sustainable electric boating to the Isle of Wight.”

The Isle of Wight, the largest and second most populated island in England, renowned for its mild climate and picturesque coastal scenery, holds the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve designation. Cowes, a

world-renowned yachting centre, and home to the prestigious sailing event that bears its name, is one of the UK’s most popular boating destinations. The three newly inaugurated Aqua superPower marine charging stations at Cowes Harbour form a crucial part of the marine charging corridor along the south coast of England, playing a pivotal role in reducing carbon emissions and preserving the island’s pristine coastlines and waters.

To support the momentous switch-on event, UK electric boat builders, Vita Yachts, RS Electric Boats, and Optima Electric Boats, offered test rides, showcasing their vessels’ remarkable capabilities and innovative technology, and shedding light on the diverse commercial, leisure, and sports applications of their boats.

Aqua superPower will supply and install its high-power smart grid marine chargers at no cost to the site operator. The company recently announced that it is leading a consortium which has secured £3.2m UK government funding to deploy critical marine charging infrastructure. Ten sites along the south coast are being plugged into the UK’s clean maritime revolution as part of The Electric Seaway Project through the Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition Round 3 (CDMC3).

Cowes Harbour Commission’s bold move towards electric boating signals a new era in sustainable maritime practices, placing the Isle of Wight firmly on the map as a leading force in sustainable boating experiences.