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Vancouver mining giant Teck Resources investing in wind-assist for cargo vessel

Bulk carrier that transports coal to be outfitted with rotors that reduce fuel use
Rotating rotors provide thrust to help reduce fuel use on ships.

Teck Resources (TSX: TECK.B, NYSE:TECK) is partnering with Oldendorff Carriers GmbH & Co. KG to invest in a wind-propulsion system for one of the bulk carriers that will ship metallurgical coal.

 The two companies are jointly investing in a retrofit of the Dietrich Oldendorff, a bulk carrier, with a Flettner Rotor system.

These rotors act somewhat like sails, generating lift and thrust from the wind, which reduces the amount of fuel ships need to burn. The ship rotors, manufactured by Norsepower, are made, in part, from recycled plastic bottles. 

The companies estimate the rotors will help reduce fuel emissions (including CO2 emissions) by 55 per cent, or 17,000 tonnes of CO2  per year. Teck estimates that to be equivalent to taking 3,500 gasoline-powered passenger vehicles off the road.

“Forty years of historical weather data show that the trade between the Pacific Northwest and Asia is one of the best trade lanes for producing reliable wind energy,” said Patrick Hutchins, CEO of Oldendorff Carriers.

“This innovative agreement to utilize wind power in shipping will reduce the carbon footprint in Teck’s supply chain and help advance the development of green transportation corridors,” Teck CEO Jonathan Price said in a news release. “Teck is collaborating with our customers and suppliers to reduce emissions in our supply chain as part of our climate strategy.”

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