East By West Ferries has ordered a second fully electric passenger ferry from Second WEBBCo.
The 132 pax electric vessel will enable the company to reduce incremental route energy costs by 82%, in part due to rising fuel costs. For example, a return trip to Days Bay on Ika Rere, East By West Ferries’ first fully electric passenger ferry purchased from WEBBCo, costs just NZ$28 (US$17) in electricity, slightly higher than one adult passenger fare. This equates to cost savings of NZ$180,000 (US$107,000) per year compared to its diesel boats doing the same journey.
By adding another electric vessel to the fleet, East by West will be able to run its entire existing schedule using the two fully electric ferries. With greater onboard energy storage, a second fully electric ferry is expected to save the operator a further US$280,000 (US$166,500) per year in overall energy costs.
Jeremy Ward, managing director at East By West Ferries, said, “Following an in-depth business case, and with the success of Ika Rere, we’ve made the decision to push for funding for a second fully electric ferry to be built by WEBBCo. We always knew we wanted to expand our electric-powered route capabilities, and with global interest in New Zealand’s electric boatbuilding, we wanted to secure a build slot for the second vessel. Ika Rere is performing exceptionally well, and we had no hesitation about continuing with our partners.”
The second electric vessel will be a sister ship to Ika Rere, and run on the existing route between Queens Wharf – Matiu/Somes Island and Days Bay with a capacity of 132 passengers. However, it will be equipped with a newer iteration of battery technology, enhancing onboard energy storage. Both vessels will be charged at Queens Wharf, with the potential to expand charging infrastructure to use the newly released Megawatt Charging Standard (MCS), which is also being considered within the project.
Read more of the latest ferries and cruises updates from the electric and hybrid marine technology industry, here.