AviCAFE project

Voies Navigables de France, HAROPA, GRTgaz and the Banque des Territoires are joining forces to develop alternative fuels in the Seine Valley region.

During the "Vert le Fluvial" webinar on 31 March 2021, Voies Navigables de France (VNF), HAROPA, GRTgaz and the Banque des Territoires formalised a 24-month partnership agreement to develop a coherent waterside fuelling offer for the Seine Valley using alternative fuels.

The commitment of VNF, HAROPA, GRTgaz and the Banque des Territoires to the AviCAFE project (fuelling with low-emissions fuels) comes in a climate of increasingly stringent regulations for greenhouse gas emissions and local pollutants. Convinced of the key role that waterways play in the mobilities energy transition, the four partners have decided to combine their skills as river, port and gas transmission infrastructure operators and financial stakeholders serving the general interest. Their aim is to cover the various challenges presented by the energy transition and to provide a coherent vision for the development of “clean” fuels in the Seine basin.

This project is supported by the Inter-ministerial Delegation for the Development of the Seine Valley (DIDVS) and co-financed by the Normandy and Ile-de-France regions and by ADEME under the Seine Valley Interregional Plan Contract (CPIER). Initially, it aims to identify the most relevant technical solutions for the river’s various uses, including natural gas, hydrogen, electricity and advanced synthetic fuels.

In consultation with energy and river sector stakeholders, a second stage will involve defining a rollout strategy for the fuelling offer. This will be based on schemes already implemented by the regions and on possible fuelling synergies between the different modes of transport (river, sea, rail, road).

This study has a dual objective

  • Offer decision-making support to local authorities and investors seeking to deploy multi-fuel stations that are accessible to the various modes of transport co-existing near the waterway (river, sea, rail, road).
  • Promote and accelerate the river sector's energy transition by giving visibility to carriers and ensuring the consistent supply of alternative fuels in the Seine Valley.

To meet these two targets, the project partners will publish a forward-looking diagnostic report at the end of 2021 on the development of alternative fuels on the waterfront. Likewise, a practical guide will come out at the beginning of 2022 with technical recommendations for the development of the fuelling network.

Press contact

Jennifer Do Couto