The Indian Ocean: central to the energy transition with LNG?

 Energy transition and circular economy 

With the mega-ship CMA-CGM Jacques Saadé now in service, the use of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) as a fuel for seagoing vessels is now a reality. This 23,000 TEU ship’s propulsion systems are powered by LNG, an energy source that allows a 20 to 40% reduction in CO2 emissions, and also emits low levels of sulphur oxides and fine particulate matter. The Mozambique Canal boasts vast LNG resources that could drive this energy transition, and the port cities of the Indian Ocean are preparing for the revolution. One example is Longoni (Mayotte, France), which is redeveloping as a support base for the industry. On the other side of the Canal, the terminals at Durban (South Africa) are being upgraded to handle LNG. Demand is high, with India expressing an interest in this cleaner form of energy. A substantial volume of LNG extracted will pass through Indian ports. Meanwhile, Total is maintaining its major investment (13 billion euros) in the province of Cabo Delgado (Mozambique), despite attacks by terrorist groups in Mocimboa da Praia. The company is also set to collaborate with Siemens on LNG turbines.

➜ L’Antenne ; CMA CGM Group ; Le Journal de Mayotte ; Mayotte 1ère ; GreenPort ; Kallanish Energy ; World Oil

Djibouti: when a port city becomes an international business centre

 Port city interface 

Construction work on this business district on the site of the former port of Djibouti was officially launched by the country’s President on 8 October. The first phase involves the creation of a hotel, exhibition and conference rooms, along with a marine research centre. Eventually, there will also be a pair of twin towers, shopping mall, marina, cruise terminal, aquarium, and other amenities. Above all, though, the project is about creating a new vision of the port city based on the “Port-Park-City” concept developed by the China Merchant Group, a key partner of Djibouti. Originally created by China Merchants Group for the Chinese port of Shekou, the concept is based on the integrated development of ports, industrial parks, services, and the city. China Merchant Group had already made clear its aim of applying the idea to several ports in Africa, including Djibouti..

The Africa Report, Port-City-Park model (2019) ; Port Strategy ; La Nation

 

A new future for Penang Bay (Malaysia)

 Climate change 

The State Government of Penang has organised an international ideas competition for suggestions on building a resilient “City-State” across the island’s different neighbouring districts. The aim is to build on the area’s historic and natural advantages to develop a new type of city, combining culture, nature, economy and new technologies, with an emphasis on innovation. There are also plans for a creative and technology precinct in George Town, while Butterworth is set to get an innovation centre based around the port installations and Penang Sentral multimodal terminal.

World Architecture ; International Ideas Competition

The Port of Busan announces a new operation for its North Port project

 Port city interface 

The North Port Development Project was launched in 2008. It concerns a vast swathe of waterfront, which the Port wants to turn into a world-class maritime and urban tourist centre. There are plans for a business district, a multi-use port district focused on passenger-based activities, cultural and leisure districts, and a residential area. The project is currently on display in the international passenger terminal, which also overlooks this North sector of the port. The Port’s current headquarters will be converted into a cruise terminal. The port is also looking at the feasibility of a new HQ, which would be housed in a smart building in the North sector, accompanying the port on its path to innovation.

North Port Redevelopment ; North Port Redevelopment Exhibition Hall ; New Office Building

AI and “smart” technologies, for greener and more efficient port cities?

 Governance 

According to recent studies, the “smart port” market is set to be worth 14 billion dollars by 2027. Artificial intelligence, automation, blockchain, and the Internet of Things all offer possibilities for improving the efficiency of port installations. Incidentally, AIVP has previously touched on these issues in an interview for the European programme “Speed”.
The port of Rotterdam (Netherlands) has created a coalition to develop AI, which includes the Muncipality of Rotterdam, InnovationQuarter, Netherlands Maritime Technology and TU Delft university. Blockchain is among the priority technologies, as seen with the “Distro” platform, also in the Netherlands, which allows electricity to be bought and sold via blockchain. In Busan (South Korea), the City Authorities have signed a MoU with the Port, universities and a technology centre to develop smart technologies as part of the South Korean Government’s “Digital New Deal” strategy. These technologies are also being developed through competitive events such as “Hackathons”. One such event took place on 14 October, organised by Ports de Lille (France) in partnership with the “Speed” programme, on the “digital and environmental revolution”.

PR Newswire ; Smart port ecosystem (1) ; Hellenic shipping news ; Port of Rotterdam (website) ; Port of Busan (press release) ; Smart port ecosystem (2)

Paris: the Seine set to form the focal point of the Olympics

 Energy transition and circular economy 

The proximity of the Seine was one of the big arguments underpinning Paris’ bid to host the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games, which focused heavily on the river’s potential benefits as part of an environmentally-friendly Games. As a result, the waterway is being used to transport the materials and excavated earth and waste from the worksites where the various venues and facilities are under construction. One such site is the future Olympic Village, with its 3,000 residential units. Haropa Ports de Paris and Voies Navigables de France are both working to ensure the Olympic-related activity is compatible with usual river logistics, whether in terms of port traffic or tourism. However, the Paris Games are being organised with an eye firmly on the future, with the Olympic Village set to be turned into an eco-district, while Haropa Ports de Paris is keen to use the Games as a way of accelerating its existing efforts to promote the energy transition, and to improve water quality in the Seine.

Navigation, Ports et Industries (Sept, dossier pp. 20-33) ; VNF ; Haropa Ports de Paris ; Le Moniteur(1) ; Le Moniteur (2)

When art comes to the port…

 Culture and identity 

We have previously told you about several projects to enhance and showcase the aesthetic appeal of port infrastructures. The latest example is to be found at the Port of Strasbourg (France), which is hosting a month of artistic projections on the side of the Malteries d’Alsace silo. The project was made possible with the collaboration of the Rhine Higher Institute of Arts. The series of projections will showcase the past and present of the Rhine Port. In Rio (Brazil), the “Rua Walls” exhibition was recently inaugurated. The initiative, which saw 18 artists turn the walls of several warehouses into artworks, is also a community inclusion project. Another public art initiative is to be found in Toronto (Canada), where artists will be invited to take up residence on the Toronto waterfront for sixteen months, creating a dialogue with the local community and bringing vibrancy to the district. In early 2021, Toronto is also set to launch a new public urban art strategy for the next ten years.

Port de Strasbourg ; Agencia Brésil ; Waterfront Toronto ; Toronto

Green hydrogen: a future energy source for port cities?

 Energy transition and circular economy 

The future seems to lie with “green” hydrogen, made from non-fossil based electricity. It would require a virtuous chain between renewable energies and hydrogen production plants, to which city-port ecosystems are particularly suited.
In that vein, the Port of Bordeaux (France) has signed an agreement to develop a green hydrogen production industry locally. It is a similar story in Bilbao (Spain), where the port authority has given the go-ahead for construction of one of the world’s largest green hydrogen plants.
These industries are often organised in the form of hubs like the one at Port Kembla (New South Wales Port Authority, Australia, helping to stimulate the local economy.
Mass-produced hydrogen could power ships and help to improve the environmental footprint of maritime shipping. To that end, some companies are researching hydrogen-based propulsion systems, including Engie and ArianeGroup which have joined forces. Prototypes of hydrogen engines are even now being tested by the Italian company Fincantieri.
There is a real market for this new fuel, as can be seen with the agreement that will see Portugal supply green hydrogen to the Port of Rotterdam, which needs the resource for its future operations.

The winning project for Cartagena waterfront (Spain)

 Port city interface 

Eleven teams submitted bids in response to the tender process organised by the Port, as reported last July. The aim was to come up with new uses and to integrate the Alfonso XII dock into the surrounding landscape more effectively. The winning project, named “La Ventana del Puerto”, includes a strong cultural component with the creation of exhibition spaces, including one close to the cruise terminal, and plans to showcase existing cultural installations and amenities. It will also create a multi-purposes public space equipped with mobile pergolas, gardens and play areas for children. Priority is given to pedestrians and cyclists, with a new underground route for vehicles. The three shortlisted proposals will be displayed at the port authority headquarters.

La verdad (+ images) ; Cartagena de Hoy (+ images) ; Murcia Economia

Industrial risks: in the wake of the Beirut explosion, how can port cities improve their industrial safety?

 Health and life quality 

The tragic accident in Beirut did much to focus minds. Port cities around the world are investing massively to make their logistical and port operations safer.
In Rouen (France), which saw a major fire at the Lubrizol plant last year, serious discussions and pollution clean-up efforts are under way to allow the company to resume its industrial activities safely.
Around a hundred kilometres away, in Le Havre, citizens are taking part in a public debate about planning rules and industrial safety. One district located in the port zone is exposed to technological risks, and its residents are keen to discuss the situation with the local authorities.
Outside Europe, strong measures are being taken to improve industrial safety. In Dakar (Senegal), the national authorities and the Port have removed all of the ammonium nitrate present in the area. A new inspection process has also been adopted, applicable to all hazardous products arriving at the port. In the same vein, in Chittatong (Bangladesh), stocks of hazardous products that have been abandoned are now systematically destroyed to eliminate the risk of accidents.