Sweden to Order Two New Icebreakers
The Swedish Maritime Administration said it will order two new icebreakers after funding for the vessels was included in the government's latest national investment plan.
According to the plan, when the two icebreakers are in operation, there will be an opportunity to invest in a third icebreaker, if the need exists.
Icebreakers are required to allow commercial ships to transport goods to Norrland's ports all year round. However, the current Atle-class icebreakers built for Sweden and Finland in the 1970s have passed their technical lifespan.
While Sweden's current icebreakers can only break a 24-meter chute, the future icebreakers will be able to break a chute of up to 32 meters, enabling the vessels to assist merchant ships that are increasing in size.
The Swedish Maritime Administration said it is still mulling choice for the new icebreakers. "To achieve the climate goals, future icebreakers need to be adapted to a future with fossil-free fuels. However, the fuel choice has not yet been made, but the conditions will be in place to meet the demands of the future," the agency said.