Maartje Theadora is ready to deliver fish by kite propulsion

Diederik Parlevliet, the Chief Executive Officer of Parlevliet & Van der Plas B.V., one of the largest European fishing companies with headquarters in Katwijk in the Netherlands, and Stephan Wrage, the Managing Director of SkySails, signed a purchase agreement for the world’s first towing-kite wind propulsion system to be installed on a fishing trawler.

SkySails propulsion is scheduled to be placed in operation early 2010 aboard the ROS-171 “Maartje Theadora” fishing vessel.

“We are looking forward to significant fuel savings by using the SkySails-System, particularly during those extended transfer runs to the African coast and in the South Pacific, not to mention the potential savings during actual fishing operations,” says Diederik Parlevliet, “while at the same time enabling us to reduce enormous amounts of CO2 emissions and make a big contribution to safeguarding the climate.”

At 141 meters in length, the “Maartje Theadora” is Germany’s largest fishing vessel and is operated by the Sassnitz-based Westbank Hochseefischerei GmbH, a member of the Parlevliet & Van der Plas Group. The ship has two MaK main engines that produce a total of 8,640 kW of power. The vessel will be fitted with a 160m2 SkySails propulsion system like those already in use on cargo ships.

Parlevliet & Van der Plas and SkySails will be working very closely together and evaluate if and in what way the wind propulsion system needs to be modified for use on fishing vessels on board the “Maartje Theadora”. For these purposes a pilot project has been launched which is financially funded and supported by the European Fisheries Fund (EFF) and the German state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania.

On the occasion of the official announcement of this cooperation and signing of the contract, Diederik Parlevliet and Stephan Wrage had the great honor to welcome EU Commissioner Joe Borg responsible for Fisheries & Maritime Affairs, as well as Dr. Gerhard Rudolphi as representative of the German state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania.

The European Union and the German state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania see in this project a pioneering effort for improving the efficiency and reducing the environmental impact of fishing with high potential for broad application in the industry.

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