“A new study on transport infrastructure charging, due this summer, tackles the thorny question of how to allocate the costs of pollution in European Ports. Isabelle Ryckbost considers its implications.”

A new study on transport infrastructure charging, due this summer, tackles the thorny question of how to allocate the costs of pollution in European ports. ESPO’s Isabelle Ryckbost considers its implications

In May this year, the Commission is expected to publish the final results of a study that was launched at the end of 2017 on ‘Sustainable Transport Infrastructure Charging and Internalisation of Transport Externalities’.

Some of the main preliminary findings of the study, which is being carried out by a consortium led by the consultancy CE Delft, were presented last December at a special event organised by the Commission. It was revealed that the total external costs of transport amount to the equivalent of around €1,000 billion annually, which corresponds to almost 7% of EU28 GDP.

The main contributors to this are environment (carbon, noise and pollution), accidents and congestion. Road is the largest contributor, accounting for 75% of the total external costs (with accidents as the maior cost) in absolute terms. For all transport modes, the total costs (external and infrastructure) are substantially higher than what the user pays.

With regard to the maritime sector, the study has selected a mix of 34 large and small ports and has extrapolated the costs on the basis of this sample. The makers of the study pointed out that they have faced limitations with regard to maritime transport data and the extrapolation is more uncertain for this sector than for the other modes. It was also said that there were many data gaps for infrastructure costs that have been filled by extrapolation.

Evidence that can’t be ignored

The final study, which is expected to be made available at the end of April or the beginning of May, will include a break-down of the costs per Member State and per mode and will also list all possible policy options. It will certainly open – or to put it more accurately, re-open – the debate on the ‘user and polluter pays’ principle and is expected to be one of the big files which will be waiting on the table of the new Parliament and Commission after the EU elections in May.

Awaiting the final results of the study and without of course anticipating the debates among our members, I would like to make a few observations.

Primarily, the preliminary results show that the externalities of transport are high. We cannot put these figures aside. It is clear that transport, as an important pillar of the economy and of society, must become safer and more sustainable. It is also clear that it must decarbonise.

Benefits as well as costs

Secondly, the infrastructure and external costs are high, but what about the benefits? Based on other EC studies and reports, transport accounts for more than 9% of the EU Gross Value Added – and who is the beneficiary? Is it only the consumer, the commuter, the tourist, the producer?

I believe that the beneficiaries of a well-connected, smart, efficient, sustainable EU transport network are to a large extent the 500 million Europeans. Transport is an enabler. Taking away this connectivity and mobility comes at a higher cost in terms of growth and cohesion.

Thirdly, what about ports? Ports are engines of growth. They are much more than loading and unloading places where the maritime connects with the hinterland. They are multimodal nodes of transport, energy, clusters of industry – which helps avoid unnecessary transport.

Ports are also nodes of the blue economy as well as being digital hubs. They are an economic ecosystem at the service of the region and the wider community. As stewards of sustainable growth, ports care about their externalities and those of their stakeholders. They monitor, develop strategies and invest to mitigate the externalities. Here also, given their complexity, it is very difficult to split the bills, or to attribute every cost to a user.

Don’t place the burden on ports

In addition, we must avoid a situation in which ports, which are to become more and more financially autonomous, are being used in that debate as the convenient tax collector. If the external costs of transport are to be internalised, it should be done in the right places.

Even if port managing bodies decide, on a voluntary basis and as part of their business strategy, to apply rebates for certain traffic and certain categories of green ships, any policy on internalisation of external costs should target the polluter at the source and cannot lead to an obligation for ports to punish for externalities or reward environmental performance.

We shouldn’t deprive ports of the limited resources they have available to build the necessary infrastructure and boost economic growth at national and local level.

I believe that the reduction of externalities must be at the core of the upcoming debates and must drive any forthcoming policies. Support for investments in new clean technologies and infrastructure and clear targets and standards must come first.

For instance, the introduction of the 0.1% sulphur limit on marine fuel in the Baltic and the North Sea in 2015 has resulted in tremendous emission reductions in the area, often up to 80%. This could never have been achieved through environmental discounts.

Price mechanisms can work to some extent but are in themselves not enough. However, increasing transparency and awareness of the environmental footprint of the supply chain might have tremendous potential to change behaviour and lower the transport externalities. It is thus time to take the shipper on board in the debate.

Isabelle Ryckbost was writing for GreenPort’s Spring 2019 issue. Read her thoughts on the power of citizens, which featured in GreenPort’s Winter 2018 issue.


Related documents



New scenarios in the Mediterranean: Suez and China, the strategies of big carriers, new technologies, and energy routes.

Italian Maritime Economy


The Suez Canal has just celebrated 150 years of operations. Its 2015 enlargement established new port balances in the Mediterranean: the two records broken in terms of number of ships and goods transited (18,000 vessels and almost 1 billion tonnes) have a deeper meaning than mere statistics. A closer look at maritime areas reveals the increased importance of East-Med ports (over a 5-year period, +40% and +7% of southbound and northbound traffic, respectively) and an upward trend in container and tanker traffic which seem to indicate increased centrality of the Mare Nostrum in terms of manufacturing and energy trade flows.

Furthermore, the phenomenon of naval gigantism does not seem to stop, and the most reliable forecasts indicate further future growth. In particular, orderbooks show that 133 new containerships in the 10-23,000 TEU category will be launched by 2022 and 45 of these will belong to the 18-23,000 TEU category. Also, rumors seem to indicate that a Mega-Megacontainership will be ordered by COSCO with a capacity of 25,000 TEU. The criteria for the selection of ports in the MED area will probably become more stringent. While this analysis was undergoing, SRM found only 4 ports capable of accommodating this type of ship. Therefore, it seems clear that smaller ports will be
concentrating on feeder traffic and medium-sized vessels as their core business, despite the need to implement dredging to increase capacity.

The scenarios outlined in this Report also illustrate the implementation status of China’s Belt & Road Initiative which indicates the end of the previous aggressive Chinese approach to terminal acquisitions in the Mediterranean and Northern Europe. The Asian giant’s position has been strengthened in the East Med (Piraeus), West Med (Valencia), access canals to the Black Sea (Istanbul), the Mediterranean (Suez) and in Northern Europe (Rotterdam) where intermodal capacity allows to reach the central-European markets. Further significant investments have been made in Abu Dhabi, Marseille and Malta while an MoU was signed with Italy at the end of March 2019 which will lead to investments in Italian ports (ie Genoa and Trieste) as well as in other sectors such as rail transport, intermodality and logistics. Debate on railway connections to/from China is still open in our country and there seems to be an intention not to miss out on this opportunity.

This Report also takes a closer look at Shortsea traffic which represents one of our country’s strengths. Indeed, Italy has a 36% market share in this type of traffic in the Mediterranean. Also, Ro-Ro in Italy amounts to more than 100 million tonnes of goods, 50% of which handled in the Mezzogiorno, and represents a strong sector of our maritime economy with excellent shipowners and a worldwide network of terminals. This needs to be continuously supported so as to avoid losing market shares in an area where our know-how is solid and well established.

Therefore, according to SRM’s analyses, the idea of a Portuality 5.0 is the new key to interpret port roles. A modern port intending to be an active player in the international competitive situation needs to be moving faster than the industry because it needs to serve it adequately and efficiently while contributing to the growth of the local territory
through attraction of investments that create jobs and boost the economy.
The port needs to encourage the growth of businesses by offering efficiency and streamlined internationalization processes which are generally speeded up whenever ships are allowed to reach destinations in short times thanks to high-quality direct services. All of this makes the port the engine of a country’s import-export.

Furthermore, a port needs to increase its ability to stimulate the creation of new businesses and start-ups. In particular, port models such as those of the Northern Range are increasing activities aimed at encouraging the growth of companies in terms of business but also of creation of companies.

Another important driver is represented by intermodality which has long been hoped for in Italy but still remains a goal to be achieved since a successful integration of ports, dry ports, roads and railways has not been completed yet. An analysis carried out by SRM in collaboration with Contship Italia (Corridors and logistic efficiency of
territories) revealed that only 19% of manufacturing companies in three major Italian regions use a mixed modality of transport (road-railway) to move goods between the port and their warehouses. Working on this aspect could represent the key to improving logistics in our country.
Cooperation between the port and the world of economic research should also be taken into account. A modern port must be aware of the dynamics of traffic and the phenomena that surround it, while avoiding isolation and strategies unrelated to those of the national system. SRM has long been supporting the whole maritime system also
through its network of partners with the aim of helping the implementation of works and research that could promote awareness and discovery of new frontiers of development and of the changes happening in the Mediterranean in terms of trade flows.
Last but not least, it is important to highlight the ability a port needs to show with regards to its role as driver of the territory. In particular, the introduction of SEZ (Special Economic Zones) in our regulatory framework has required portuality to make the effort of becoming a mainstay of the crucial connection between industry and logistics. In this
way, the port becomes a catalyst to the import-export of the territory and therefore one of the main engines of economic development.
Italian ports, after a difficult season determined by a complex reform which is still undergoing, are trying to find new competitive momentum and the new presidents are working hard to design and implement new strategies through the identification of the role that Port Network Authorities will intend to play in this situation. Our ports need new
stimuli and renewed awareness of the importance of logistics and intermodality in pursuit of a role at the service of industry and tourism supporting maritime operators who wish to further develop. In this context the Mezzogiorno, which activates about 50% of port traffic of the country and whose two thirds of international trade are carried out by sea, needs to be put in a significant position with appropriate investments and strategies. Southern Italy
boasts a geographic position close to the Suez Canal and on the routes connecting the markets of Northern Europe, the Middle and Far East. This is an important fact to take into account when considering the role that this area can play in terms of economic growth of the country.
This is exactly the scope of SRM’s contribution to a deeper understanding of such complex, articulated and constantly changing phenomena. The world of the sea moves at a fast pace and the maritime-economic aspects need continuous monitoring alongside the changes that they can produce. This Report, in fact, is only a part of the several in-depth analyses, papers, interviews that the Observatory on Maritime Transport and Logistics carries out and which it will continue to perform in order to keep the attention high on our maritime transport sector. Also, for this issue of the report, SRM has operated in synergy with national and international centres of study which have used their specific know-how to enrich and further validate the contents of these papers.
SRM is a member of the Global Shipping Think Tank Alliance together with 16 other centres of research in Europe, the US and the Far East. We are proud to be the only Italian centre of maritime research, and one of the four European ones to be part of this important network. We have also established relations with the KLU-Kuhne Logistics University of Hamburg, the Universities of Rotterdam and Antwerp and with the OECD.
Also noteworthy is another agreement signed by SRM with the Energy Department of the Polytechnic of Turin with which new global energy routes are being analysed. This year, as a sign of increased prestige for the Report, the research team can pride itself with the presence of two renowned papers elaborated by the Port Network
Authorities of the Central Tyrrhenian Sea and Northern Adriatic Sea. These institutions have demonstrated to share our point of view in terms of the messages that this volume intends to send, as illustrated by its title which highlights a growing and increasingly central Mediterranean.

Another strength of this Report is represented by the collaboration with Sea Europe, a network comprising the main European players of the sector of shipbuilding, another significant field of the maritime chain. In conclusion, it seems crucial, for our research policy, to stay connected and to network with other Italian and foreign centres of research but also with operators who can complete the Report with their experiences so as to make this volume a reference publication for the sectors of ports and shipping.

As for the structure of the Report, it is organized as follows:
The first chapter contains an analysis of the current situation with the most important economic data, international and national port traffic with details as to the ports, canal transits, short-sea, and a focus on the Suez Canal and on import-export in our country.

The second chapter takes a closer look at Ro-Ro, one of the main sectors for the Italian maritime world, by providing detailed analyses of Car Carrier vessels, which transport new cars.
After that, the third chapter has been elaborated by a team comprised of members of the Polytechinc of Hong Kong and SRM. This work takes into account current and future scenarios of Global Container Carriers through an analysis of their fleet, orderbook and financial performance while also considering the effects of the IMO Sulphur cap 2020 on reduction of Sulphur emissions from ships, a phenomenon that will significantly reshape maritime investments. This chapter is closely linked with the fourth one, elaborated by the OECD, about the Big shipping alliances. This topic has long been one of SRM’s focus points as this phenomenon is markedly affecting routes and the global logistic situation.
Furthermore, Sea Europe have elaborated the fifth chapter on European industry and maritime technologies, a sector that is amongst the most important ones in the world in terms of aggregate production value (€ 112.5 billion), accounting for over 23% of global production value and generating over 900,000 direct and indirect jobs.
Pino Musolino, President of the Port Network Authority of the Northern Adriatic Sea (Venice and Chioggia) analyses with detail the phenomenon of China’s Belt & Road Initiative, focusing on future strategies and impacts in the Mediterranean and in Italy with very interesting considerations and analyses.
In the seventh chapter, Pietro Spirito, President of the Port Network Authority of the Central Tyrrhenian Sea (Naples, Salerno, Castellammare), focuses on the energy future of ports. The energy component is one of the crucial variables for the competitiveness of economic systems and for the structure of international trade. The maritime sector represents an important articulation of it, as a result of the exchange flows that are determined between producer and consumer countries.
The eighth chapter has been elaborated by the SISI (Shanghai International Shipping Institute), one of SRM’s partners. This piece of research is mainly focused on Dry Bulk, through the analysis of routes and future prospects in the Far East, as this specific sector is capable of influencing trends in the maritime trade.
Finally, chapter nine has been written by the Consiglio Nazionale dei Dottori Commercialisti (National Council of Accountants) and illustrates the results of the Observatory on balance sheets of maritime businesses. It highlights a fast-paced growth that results in increases of employment (+1.3%) and of revenues (12.6%), figures which
seem even more remarkable if compared with the overall growth of turnover of Italian SMEs, which amounted to 5.3% in the same period.
We wish to conclude this introduction to the volume with a special thanks to SRM’s researchers and to the partners of this project who demonstrate their faith in our work and support us in this adventure we have embarked upon. A special thanks goes to all the authors who have contributed to adding to the value of this research.
Hoping we have been able to provide factual support to those convinced that the development of the economy of maritime transport and logistics is a priority for our entire country. The challenge is still ongoing.


Source: https://www.srm-maritimeconomy.com/

BILOG 2019:  16-17 Oct 2019 La Spezia

The sustainable, connected and resilient road to 2030

European and Regional perspectives



BiLOG is an agreement signed by La Spezia Port Authority and Municipality of Piacenza in order to create a special event on sustainable, connected and resilient topics with a European spin. The Forum will focus on regional and European dimensions, on the transport and maritime investments, highlighting the importance of cohesion between the players of the logistics chain.

For more information about BiLOG, please click here: https://www.bilog.it/


Logistics and Maritime Forum
The sustainable, resilient and connected road to 2030
October 16th – 17th 2019 @ LaSpezia Expo


Click here to Register


PROGRAMME HIGHLIGHTS:• Maritime and logistic facing the 2030 trends
• The Container market and its challenges
• The new TEN-T Regulation and the CEF 2 opportunities
• Connected ports and logistics
• La Spezia port system and the role on the Santo Stefano Dry ports
• Sustainability and circular economy: the Bio LNG case
• Rail last mile and e-logistic
• Blue Growth
• Port of the FutureCONFERENCES          EXPO          NETWORKING          WORKSHOP

Don’t miss the chance to present your solutions becoming one of BiLOG2019 sponsors

Event Manager: Giorgia Montorsi @ Circle S.p.A.

Email:  montorsi@circletouch.eu ,  phone: +39 010 8691039


by & filed under Environment, Governance, Sustainability.

As the UK government confirms a target to bring all greenhouse gas emissions to net-zero by 2050 has been adopted into law, the British Ports Association (BPA) anticipates this will require “close collaboration” between industry and government to adhere to what is a “very challenging timeline”.

Mark Simmonds, head of policy and external affairs at the BPA, said that while port emissions account for a small part of the target, it will be a “challenge for ports with large footprints to decarbonize their vessels, vehicles and plant and equipment” and the legislation may result in the accelerated purchase of costly equipment alongside the building of infrastructure to support the goal.

He stated: “30 years is shorter than the design life for some harbour cranes, so it’s a very challenging timeline. Meeting this target may mean investing in more expensive equipment sooner than planned.”

Unclear role

Although the government has said it plans to include international shipping in the net zero target, it is unclear where it fits into the strategy, said the BPA. It intends to work closely with the government to establish what the target will mean for ports and shipping.

Regarding the inclusion of international shipping in the target, Mr. Simmonds said: “This could have a big impact as international shipping accounts for the majority of traffic in UK ports and so this could require new fuelling infrastructure, for example.

“In the short term, we are keen to continue to promote coastal shipping as a method for reducing UK freight emissions and ongoing initiatives such as the Clean Maritime Plan.

The UK government previously had a target of at least an 80% reduction from 1990 levels.

Source: Greenport

Valeria Mangiarotti

Valeria Mangiarotti, MedCruise director, sustainability and environmental issues. Credit: Port of Cagliari


Plans for LNG infrastructure at Cagliari are part of a much larger programme underway in the Mediterranean, as Valeria Mangarotti explains.

As director, sustainability and environmental issues on the board of MedCruise and marketing manager of the port network of the Sardinian sea, Ms Mangiarotti is no stranger
to the political cut-and-thrust that accompanies port development in southern Europe. Port aspects of countries’ commitments under the Paris Agreement on climate change
play out against a backdrop of existing national, regional and provincial regulations and practices, many of which can make positive change difficult to accomplish.

Ms Mangiarotti, who represents Sardinian ports in the Association of MedCruise, says that Cagliari is one of 43 MedCruise member ports that are planning to provide LNG bunkering facilities to cruise and commercial ships.

Bold move

This development is a bold move at a time when many port authorities in the Mediterranean are caught in a chicken-and-egg situation, waiting for proof of the level of demand
before investing in the appropriate infrastructure to bunker ships with LNG. “The cruise ports in Italy are working on making progress for LNG supply,” says Ms Mangiarotti. She
adds that some Mediterranean cruise ports are ready for LNG, “for example, Barcelona in Spain, Marseille in France, and Alexandria In Egypt.”

She adds that MedCruise is working on ensuring its members achieve more sustainable outcomes of major projects such as this one – not an easy task because of the degree of bureaucracy that these projects involve, she says. “When you decide to build LNG infrastructure in a port, it is necessary to have a lot of actors. MedCruise is writing stepby-
step guidelines for all European ports to arrive at LNG supply.” She says that these guidelines build on more general advice issued previously by EMSA with a view to enabling
more ports to take action towards LNG provision.

GreenPort also spoke to Massimo Deiana, chairman of the Sardinian Port Authority, about how Sardinia is set to become an LNG hub.


Source: Greenport

Solent Stevedores has invested GB£1m into 33 electric counterbalance forklift trucks from STILL Materials Handling to help reduce emissions at the Port of Southampton ahead of the 2019 cruise season.

electric forklift trucks

Solent Stevedores’ electric counterbalance forklift trucks feature batteries with a high storage capacity. Credit: Solent Stevedores/ ABP



The trucks feature batteries with high storage capacity and provide enough energy for eight hours of operation. They are designed to improve operational efficiency and safety, plus reduce noise pollution.

“Our staff pride themselves on providing the highest level of customer service and by investing in the best equipment, we hope to further improve efficiency whilst the exciting growth of cruise at the Port of Southampton continues,” said Tom Dynes, operations director at Solent Stevedores, which currently provides services for over 80% of the cruise vessels calling at ABP-owned Southampton.

Mr Dynes added: “We also continue to work closely with ABP to further reduce the amount of emissions generated by our port operations and we are proud to have an entire fleet of 100% electric fork lift trucks operating across all four cruise terminals.”

Nick Smith, STILL UK managing director, commented: “We are immensely proud to be able to support Solent Stevedores in their commitment to driving down their environmental footprint.”

It’s estimated that this year Solent Stevedores will provide in-port services for around 370 cruise ships.



The first small-scale LNG facility in the US with both marine and truckloading capabilities has opened to serve customers at the Port of Jacksonville.


The JAX LNG facility has the capacity to produce 120,000 gallons of LNG per day. Credit: JAX LNG



JAX LNG, located at Dames Point in Jacksonville, Florida, was constructed through a joint venture between Pivotal LNG and NorthStar Midstream (NorthStar).

“Pivotal is committed to transforming the nation’s energy landscape by leading the way in how we supply liquefied natural gas to our customers,” said Tim Hermann, president of Pivotal LNG. “One way we are doing this is through the development of the JAX LNG facility. With our partners NorthStar, we’ve implemented innovative solutions to make clean, safe, reliable and affordable LNG available to marine and inland customers that can be served from the port of Jacksonville.”

Expansion potential

Currently, the JAX LNG facility has the capacity to produce 120,000 gallons of LNG per day and store more than 2m gallons.

There is room at the site to expand the facility and add two liquefaction trains and a second storage tank which would increase LNG production capacity to 600,000 gallons per day and store up to 4m gallons. JAX LNG can service its maritime customers via LNG transport vessels.

Construction of the JAX LNG facility began in late 2016. It carried out the first-of-its-kind, ship-to-ship bunkering operations in the US and the loading of TOTE Maritime’s Clean Jacksonville, the first LNG bunker barge built in the US.

JAX LNG is also the long-term supplier of LNG to the world’s first LNG dual-fuel container ships, the Isla Bella and Perla del Caribe, operated by TOTE Maritime Puerto Rico.

by & filed under Environment, Port infrastructure.

Puerto Coronel has become the first port in Chile to incorporate zero-emission electric forklift cranes into its operations.

Puerto Coronel

Puerto Coronel says it is the first port in Chile to utilise electric forklift cranes. Credit: Puerto Coronel


The port purchased the forklift cranes with minimum noise generation to mark the beginning of its Puerto Verde programme, that aims to progressively incorporate electric equipment and increase the use of more environmentally friendly technologies. The three Linde High Lift e50L cranes will allow a saving of 80% in energy compared to the port’s existing cranes.

“We started this year with three cranes. I hope that by the end of the year we can double that park, and two or three years from now, I hope 100% of the 5 ton cranes are electric. The 7 tons are just coming to the market, we have to do the tests and possibly by the end of the year we can incorporate at least one and with that we can start modifying our plant to this type of equipment,” said Javier Anwandter, general manager of Puerto Coronel.

Lithium-ion battery

Each crane can load up to 5t and has a long-life lithium-ion battery, which in normal operating conditions lasts up to eight hours. They can complete the process of loading in three hours, said Puerto Coronel.

The port received two STS cranes last February. This allowed the replacement of two mobile oil cranes. The port said this enabled it to become the first in the Biobío region to operate a container dock with electric power.



by & filed under Governance.

Shoreham Port has launched three new eco-friendly initiatives including a proposal for a new biodiversity corridor along the port’s seafront, tree planting on the port’s perimeter and a trial installation of debris-collecting Seabins.


Wildlife planting will take place on all the port’s new development sites. Credit: Shoreham Port


The initiatives follow the UK port’s recertification of its EcoPort status in April and its appointment of the UK’s first port director of infrastructure & climate change in February.

Tony Parker, director of the infrastructure and climate change at the port, commented: “We hope that the biodiversity corridor and Shoreham Arbor can be the start of helping to bring the Brighton and Lewes South Downs Biosphere into the city. The Seabins initiative is a great way to continue to keep our marinas clean and to further protect our water-based wildlife such as swans, ducks, and fish.”

Biosphere Partnership

The proposed biodiversity corridor will be a project led by the Brighton and Lewes Downs Biosphere Partnership, of which the port is a member.

Creation of the corridor will be gradual and enabled through a policy of including wildlife planting sites on all the port’s new development sites, and by identifying and nurturing wildlife planting on all other sites that could contribute to local biodiversity.

The port also plans to extend tree planting all the way along the northern edge of its site, from Southwick to Hove Lagoon.

Finally, Poralu Marine-produced Seabins will be installed in the port’s Lady Bee and Nicholson’s marinas. Each floating trash collector has the capacity to catch half a tonne of debris annually, including surface oil, pollutants, and microplastics.



by & filed under Events, Project news.


DocksTheFuture will be at Transport Logistic Munich, the most relevant fair in Europe for the Transport & Logistics sector, in a stand together with the project coordinator Circle SpA. Circle is an operational partner of the EU project, which aims to define the “Port of the Future”, in relation to the digitisation of logistics and bureaucratic processes, the reduction of emissions, the energy transition, and a wider innovation path linked to sustainability issues. DocksTheFuture will be at Transport Logistic at Booth 405 Halle B3.