Haropa Port has deepened its collaboration with the company Vedettes de Paris, aiming to promote the greening of the Paris river fleet. A special “energy transition” accord in the form of a rider to a site occupancy agreement has been signed by the two partners at the Greater Paris Mayors’ Show. 

The Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games offer a marvellous opportunity to showcase the major advantages of river transportation for addressing ecological and societal issues, most notably via a roll-out of cleaner propulsion systems and quayside electrification. 

An ambitious goal has been set for 2024 with a view to speeding up the energy transition across the whole of the river fleet. During the opening ceremony, nearly 30 boats will be fitted with electric or hybrid electric-thermal engines. The thirty or so boats selected for the opening ceremony of the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games will come from a Paris fleet that includes over one hundred and fifty commercial craft. To date, 20 engine retrofits and 11 newbuild green vessels have been or are being implemented. 

Haropa Port: switch to hybrid or 100% electric propulsion

The transition to greener propulsion systems in the river sector reflects a proactive, collective approach unparalleled in Europe, contributing to the sector’s energy transition and competitiveness. Actors in the river economy see their commitment to this transition as a significant contribution to the legacy of the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

To help offset the investment involved in fleet greening, Haropa Port has implemented a support programme for its customers, granting a time extension to temporary site occupancy agreements as regards passenger vessels, on condition that owners commit to a switch to hybrid or 100% electric propulsion for their entire fleet, completing at least one engine retrofit by 1 June 2024.

The document signed by Haropa Port places the occupancy of Suffren Quay by Vedettes de Paris on a contractual footing up to 2041. The rider to the occupancy agreement entails a greening of the Vedettes de Paris fleet. The company has started modifying all of its passenger vessels. An initial engine retrofit has been carried out on the Paris Trocadéro, a boat that entered service at the end of 2023. Two others have begun their retrofits, the Paris Iéna and the Paris Montparnasse, and are scheduled to return to commercial service in June.At the cutting edge of this ambitious undertaking, one that involves massive investment, the firm has opted for 100% electrical propulsion, enabling it to offer zero emissions cruises. Vedettes de Paris has also started work on the electrification of its embarkation dock at a cost of €1.5m. Connection to the grid will give it the power needed for recharging the batteries of its craft. The total investment for retrofits on all the firm’s sightseeing craft is estimated at €9.5m.

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