International Workshop of the North Sea Ports
Knowledge transfer for the topic: sediment management between ports, industry, and environmental research
Delfzijl | Oldenburg, October 29, 2019
The tidal currents keep the sea floor in perpetual motion. These currents cause the formation of sand and mud deposits that can affect maritime ship traffic. In order to ensure access to the ports and port facilities, the waterways must have a certain, guaranteed depth. Many port companies in the North Sea region are facing the same challenges: on the one hand, they must ensure smooth port operations and, on the other hand, reduce their ecological footprint.
The port companies Niedersachsen Ports and Groningen Seaports are conducting a workshop in Eemshaven, in which experts are working on issues concerning an efficient management of sediments and the handling of dredge spoil in ports. What is the impact of current and future sediment movements in the North Sea and the rivers on the sediment entry into ports? How can ports respond to changing framework conditions in an environmentally responsible, yet most efficient manner? What technological developments promise the highest benefit when it comes to warranting safe access to the ports?
Joint Solutions for Innovative Approaches
“From our experience we know that we can best answer questions within networks and collaborations. This is a great way to come up with joint, innovative solutions. Everyone benefits from it, but it is the Wadden Sea World Heritage Site that benefits the most”, Dr. Matthäus Wuczkowski, Sustainability Manager at Niedersachsen Ports, explains.
German, Dutch and Belgian experts from port industry, industry, research, and environmental protection exchange their practical experiences, share their knowledge about ongoing projects and about the latest research findings.
The National Park Administration for the Wadden Sea National Park of Lower Saxony (Niedersachsen), the Flanders Marine Institute, and the Ludwig-Franzius-Institute are delivering lectures on current research projects around the topic of sediment movements in the Wadden Sea and the impact of released pollutants. Additional emphases are placed on the introduction of efficient dredging technologies, as well as the alternative and environmentally compatible handling of the dredge spoil.
Groningen Seaports is participating in the program EemsDollard2050. Within this program different solutions to decrease the amount of fluid mud within the estuary. The most effective way is to build up a new economy of the reuse of the dredged material. A couple of these solutions will be presented during the workshop.
The EU Project DUAL Ports
Niedersachsen Ports has designed this workshop as part of the European project DUAL Ports, which was initiated in 2015. It is funded by the EU and the Interreg North Sea Program. DUAL Ports brings ports, companies, and scientific institutions from Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark, and Scotland to the table. The objective of this collaboration is the joint development of solutions and approaches for the long-term reduction of CO2 emissions and pollution caused by the activities of the port industry. The exchange of knowledge between the partners and the resulting synergies are intended to support and accelerate the development and implementation of sustainability innovations in ports.
The Workshop-Agenda is available here:https://www.nports.de/fileadmin/user_upload/Sediment_Workshop_Eemshaven_Agenda.pdf
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Niedersachsen Ports is owner and operator of five seaports, seven island supply ports, plus three regional ports along the German North Sea shore. The registered office of the company is in Oldenburg. Through the branch offices in Brake, Cuxhaven (with satellite location Stade), Emden and Wilhelmshaven, Niedersachsen Ports is managing the port infrastructure in the large seaports of the State of Niedersachsen.
In addition, the Norden branch operates the supply ports for the East Frisian Islands. This way, Niedersachsen Ports is able to offer a multitude of port locations from one single source
Groningen Seaports is the port authority for the port of Delfzijl, Eemshaven and the adjoining industrial sites. The organization provides the complete package of port services to its industrial and commercial clients, from logistics and infrastructure services to the issue and maintenance of the sites in both port regions. As well as the two excellently equipped ports, Groningen Seaports manages the industrial sites around the ports and at other areas in the Delfzijl/Eemshaven region. Various clustered business sites are located on the sites, including a chlorine-related chemicals cluster with Nouryon and its alliance partners as important players. Also, a large part of Eemshaven has been earmarked for the development of energy-related industry with large energy producers such as ENGIE, NorNed, Vattenfall, TenneT, and RWE/Essent. And that attracts energy consumers as well: Google builds the largest data center of Europe in Eemshaven.