Supporting sustainable agriculture and biodiversity


The Port of Montreal, in Canada, is committing to preserve biodiversity and the quality of water, air and the environment in several farms in the region by supporting the ALUS Montérégie environmental program. This initiative is connected to the expansion of the Contrecoeur terminal and will help to preserve ecosystems and support farmers in their efforts to protect the environment.

Port of Montreal, Alus Montérégie

Traditional and new ways to highlight port-city heritage

 Culture and identity 

Port City heritage buildings are one of the main elements in the port city identity. It is necessary to protect them because they tell stories from the past and show the influence of the port in the urban landscape. The port of Tarragona for example, is refurbishing its emblematic clock tower from the early 20th century and its former HQ for new uses. Another Spanish port, Valencia is investing to protect the clock building from swallows, while allowing them to nest. Another approach can be found in Strasbourg, in France, where port has become a showcase for street art from artists like Apaiz.

Port of Tarragona 1, Port of Tarragona 2, Port of Valencia, Pokaa Strasbourg

The energy transition is accelerating in port cities

 Energy transition and circular economy 

Changing to green energy sources is one of the key challenges for port cities. The port authority of Rotterdam (the Netherlands) has a program to install solar panels in its own buildings and encourage port companies to do the same by providing expertise. Port and city are also working together with innovative partners like Sunrock. In other port cities, one of the main approaches to implement the energy transition is providing green electricity to ships, as it will happen in short in Lisbon (Portugal) via shore-to-ship solutions, and in Genoa and Savona (Italy) with the electrification of quays. However, the energy transition requires cooperation, as it is visible in Norway, where the seven ports of the Oslo fjord will receive financing for several projects, including shore power for ships. Another crucial aspect of the energy transition is finding alternative energy sources, as it is visible in Le Havre (France), where port and city are investing to become low carbon after the closure of its coal plant in 2021.

Port of Rotterdam, Messaggero Marittimo, MT Logistikk, L’Usine Nouvelle, Revista Cargo

Spanish port cities are investing in human capital

 Human capital 

Spanish ports are increasingly investing in new programs to innovate in the port city community. On a national scale, the Ports 4.0 fund from Puertos del Estado is already open for applications including projects and ideas, with a budget of 12 million €. The port of Bilbao has already identified 40 potential projects to apply to the national fund and to be integrated in the new Bilbao Port Lab. Other Spanish ports are also developing or expanding their innovation labs. In the case of Sevilla (PDF), the port and the university signed an agreement to increase the facilities of their innovation centre to include an industrial area for prototyping and a start-up incubator. Other example is Valencia, where the port is creating with other partners the #SuperLabPorts, to focus on climate change. The port of Valencia also launched recently a program for dual vocational training in ports, in cooperation with the regional government. Other ports in Spain, such as Barcelona, have similar programs to support the growth of companies and students.

Puertos del Estado, Port of Bilbao, Port of Seville (PDF), Port of Valencia, Valenciaport Foundation, Port of Barcelona – Spanish ports