As part of its sustainability strategy, HHLA is electrifying its terminal processes. Plants and processes that were previously powered by fossil fuels such as diesel are converted to electric drives and supplied with power from renewable energy.
For example, the entire fleet of container transporters, known as Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs), at Altenwerder terminal is being electrified. The progress made as a result is already clearly visible. In 2022, the AGV e-fleet at CTA grew by ten more, meaning 90 percent of AGVs are already on the road with battery power and green electricity. Carbon emissions from the remaining AGVs, which still use diesel as fuel, are currently offset by carbon certificates. In 2023, the conversion of the AGV fleet to battery-electric operation will be completed with the commissioning of the last eleven battery-powered vehicles.
In addition, about 120 battery-powered passenger cars are already in operation. The vehicles are used by employees at the terminals to move between the facilities. They are also used as shuttle services and first aid vehicles. The entire e-fleet relies on electricity from renewable energy sources. A comprehensive network of charging stations ensures that HHLA employees can find an electric car if needed. A large proportion of the e-vehicles move only within the respective terminal boundaries, but nevertheless, annual mileages of 25,000 km and more are not uncommon, as the terminals operate 24/7. This results in over 700,000 kilometres being covered by HHLA’s e-fleet every year. The use of e-vehicles reduces both noise pollution and carbon emissions. In addition, battery-powered passenger cars require significantly less maintenance than vehicles with combustion engines.
Electrification is also underway at the other terminals. At the Container Terminal Burchardkai for example, the electrified storage crane system is being continuously expanded and was supplemented by two new storage blocks with six cranes in the beginning of 2023. In the case of terminal facilities which, in HHLA’s view, cannot yet be electrified in any meaningful way, the focus is on increasing energy efficiency through hybrid drives. In 2023, 8 new large units with hybrid technology are added to the fleet. With this technology, carbon emissions are reduced by around 30 percent compared to earlier models.
The HHLA subsidiary METRANS is also striving for electrification. For example, since 2021 all METRANS trains operating in Germany have been powered exclusively by renewable energy. This conversion will cut carbon emissions from METRANS by approximately 65,000 tonnes per year.
And HHLA is also implementing measures to use renewable energy at its sites abroad. For example, operations at the Container Terminal Tallinn in Estonia switched to green electricity in mid-2021. With the terminal’s total annual consumption amounting to approximately 3.7 million kilowatt hours, this will achieve carbon savings of approximately 2,500 tonnes per year. In 2022, a photovoltaic system was commissioned for the self-supply of electricity. Climate action at HHLA is Group-wide.
By implementing its balanced logistics strategy, HHLA brings ecological, social and economic responsibility into harmony.