A rendering of the “eWolf” electric tugboat. Courtesy Crowley Maritime

The Port of San Diego announced plans Monday to test the first electric-powered tugboat at the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal.

The 82-foot-long “eWolf” designed by Jacksonville, FL-based Crowley Maritime will be built at a shipyard in Alabama and is expected to be operational in 2023.

“Crowley’s first-of-its-kind electric tugboat is a game changer. It checks all the boxes by providing environmental, economic, and operational benefits for our communities and maritime industry,” said Port Chair Michael Zucchet.

“We are proud to work with Crowley and couldn’t be more pleased the eWolf will operate exclusively on San Diego Bay,” he said.

The innovative new tug will have pulling and towing power of 70 tons. It will replace a diesel-powered vessel that uses 30,000 gallons of fuel a year.

“With this groundbreaking tug design, our team continues to embrace our role as leaders in the maritime industry while providing our customers with innovative and sustainable solutions done right,” said Tom Crowley, chairman and CEO of the company designing the tug.

The project is a partnership involving the port, Crowley, the San Diego County Air Pollution Control District, the California Air Resources Board, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Maritime Administration.

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Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.