At a gathering in Rockland July 27, Pendleton Yacht Yard, of Islesboro, demonstrated its new fully electric boat, named Take Charge. The boat will be used to demonstrate electric marine propulsion on Maine’s working waterfront in a partnership with Island Institute.
“We’re thrilled to be using an electric boat for our business,” said Gabe Pendleton, owner of Pendleton Yacht Yard, in a news release. “We’re just beginning to appreciate the benefits of electric propulsion and look forward to sharing what we learn from this demonstration project with other businesses in the midcoast.”
Pendleton Yacht Yard will use the boat, which is powered by a 40hp Flux Marine electric outboard, and charged with solar power, for service calls, moving marine equipment and materials, and other working waterfront needs.
While the boat is in use, data will be gathered using a baseline usage device to help inform improvements in future electric boat hull design. As part of the partnership, PYY will host a number of sea trials for other businesses and individuals interested in electric propulsion, offering first hand experience with this emerging technology.
“We have a vision for a fully electric working waterfront in Maine,” said Kimberly A. Hamilton, Island Institute president. “It’s right for the environment and right for business resilience. This partnership with Pendleton Yacht Yard, and others in the works, are important steps in moving our state towards its climate goals—seeing is believing.”
Electric outboard motors offer many benefits including significantly reduced Co2 emissions (even when charged with non-renewable energy sources), less water pollution, more predictable operating costs and quiet operation, the release said.
In addition to funding the partnership with PYY, Island Institute’s Center for the Marine Economy is working to advance the electrification of Maine’s working coast, including creation of an introductory course on electric boats with the Maine Community College System and Mid-Coast School of Technology, and a follow-on course planned for electric outboard maintenance; solar energy installations at wharfs and docks; and seeking to improve the charging infrastructure on Maine’s coast.
The Island Institute is a 40-year-old nonprofit organization, based in Rockland, that works to sustain Maine’s island and coastal communities and is committed to a just, resilient, and vibrant future for the coast of Maine. For more information, visit slandinstitute.org.