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International Port City News

February 14h 2021

International Port City News

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Weekly Features

“Green is the new black”: going green to weather the economic crisis
“Green is the new black”: going green to weather the economic crisis

Recovery plans are springing up in every part of the world. Port cities are often central to these major stimulus packages. Europe has targeted green growth as strategically important, with the “Next Generation EU” plan bearing its first fruits in the shape of the Horizon programme and initiatives by DG Move. For Haropa (France), 71 million euros will be invested in both biodiversity and offshore wind.  There are green shoots in Northern Europe too, with plans for a 10 GW offshore wind hub off the coast of Jutland (Denmark). Asia is also at the forefront. Taichung (Taiwan) will be at the heart of a 5.7 GW complex. Wind farms are also growing in Sinan (South Korea) and Guangdong (People’s Republic of China). The coastal regions of the South China Sea are especially well advanced in this area.

Lien   Danish Energy Agency
Lien   China Dialogue
Lien   Taiwan International Ports Corporation
Lien   Mer et Marine
Lien   Splash 247
Building with nature: solutions for adapting to climate change in the City Port areas
Climate change
Building with nature: solutions for adapting to climate change in the City Port areas

Adaptation to climate change is the first objective of AIVP’s Agenda 2030. It is one of the main concerns of coastal territories and port cities. As such, AIVP shares ideas that can inspire the various stakeholders to increase the resilience of the territories. In this article, Erik van Eekelen, sets out the six Enablers identified by EcoShape to “build with nature” in aquatic landscapes.

On the 25th of January, the Climate Adaptation Summit gathered several world leaders into a digital event, to put climate adaptation in the spotlight. Untill now, the Paris Agreement and many other world-wide initiatives on dealing with climate change have focused primarily on mitigation by limiting our greenhouse gas emissions towards zero by 2050. However, at the start of this decade, we can no longer close the eyes to the impacts that climate change is having already and will continue to have, even if we reach the most ambitious goals of the Paris Agreement. Rising sea levels, increased precipitation, droughts and heatwaves will disrupt the current status quo and impact our cities, landscapes, and ports. At the same time, we see a global decline in biodiversity. Ecosystems we depend upon are under an increased amount of stress. The majority of world leaders agree that we should act now: António Guterres (UN secretary-general), Ban Ki-moon (co-chair of the Global Commission on Adaptation), Boris Johnson, Emmanuel Macron, Angela Merkel, and John Kerry (Special Presidential Envoy for Climate of the United States of America) included that in their statements.

But what kind of action do we need? At the Climate Adaptation Summit and COP25 summit there was a common understanding that Nature-based Solutions (NbS) are an invaluable part of the solution. But do we know how to realize those on a sufficient scale? And what is possible in the context of ports and cities? Following the Building with Nature (BwN) approach, EcoShape aims to inspire and respond to these questions.

Building with Nature is a conceptual approach to creating, implementing, and upscaling Nature-based Solutions for water-related infrastructure. Shifting the development paradigm toward Building with Nature requires redefining what to do, which design steps to follow, and how to do so; that is, a complete change in thinking, acting, and interacting. Building with Nature is a methodology to mainstream Nature-based Solutions, since it offers guidance on implementation and design. Being build on practical experiences of initiating, designing and realizing (pilot-)projects and executing knowledge development projects, it provides practical insights, tools and hands-on approaches, along with its broader philosophy, design and implementation guidance. Successful implementation of Nature-based Solutions is only possible when a project team considers the surrounding natural and social system, and proactively harnesses the forces of nature. Early stakeholder involvement is essential to maximize the positive outcomes of a project. All Nature-based Solutions have four primary characteristics in common, namely that they are inherently dynamic, multi-functional, context-specific and innovative. To enable Building with Nature these aspects must be carefully considered throughout the development process, and EcoShape has defined six Enablers to do so:

Ports and cities are anthropogenic, designed landscapes. Humans have interfered with the natural systems, since they started to navigate and trade to maximize benefits for their societies. Mono-functional infrastructure such as breakwaters, quays, roads and stormwater infrastructure have altered the water-land transition creating a border between the built environment and its natural surroundings. Climate change urges the re-development of these interfaces to increase their resilience and adaptivity. Building with Nature offers the opportunity to maximize benefits for society and for the surrounding natural system. This restores the connectivity with and within the ecosystem, sustains economic functions of cities and ports and increases flood safety. Due to relatively dense living, high land value, and large economic activity, there is both a need and an appreciation for these various benefits of nature-based solutions. The approach in cities and ports should focus on the sediment and water balance within the built environment, navigation channels and port basins, the creation of more natural water-land transitions and the potential to connect to and strengthen ecosystems nearby.

A good example is the Marconi waterfront development, in The Netherlands. Several BwN-principles were applied in the same project: 16 ha. of pioneer salt marsh and 13 ha. of recreational salt marshes with walkways and bird observation points were created. The city beach was enlarged and coupled to a multifunctional boulevard. The project contributed to flood risk reduction, enhanced salt marsh habitats, added recreational value, and helped to reconnect the city of Delfzijl with the sea. Integrating the various natural features gained broad support among multiple stakeholders. In all, the development made perfect use of the local context and the ambition to restore Delfzijl’s sea-focused identity, which had been diminished over the past century due to widespread industrialization and incremental dike strengthening works.

The case of Marconi waterfront demonstrates the potential of NbS in coastal territories. More innovative projects for climate change adaptation applying these principles can be found in the new book “Building with Nature: Creating, implementing and upscaling Nature-based Solutions”, published by EcoShape and nai010. From rivers and estuaries, to lowland lakes and port cities, each project provided lessons to be learnt and inspire local actors worldwide.

The book is available here



3 innovative tools unveiled at the Citizen Port Meeting in Bilbao
3 innovative tools unveiled at the Citizen Port Meeting in Bilbao

The 6th Port Citizen workshop, held on 24 and 25 October 2019 in collaboration with […]

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Port-City instawalk, an educator’s approach on port-city relationships
Culture and identity
Port-City instawalk, an educator’s approach on port-city relationships

Being passionate about ports and port-cities doesn’t always make you realize that what you see […]

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At a Glance

Titre très très très très long d’une brève (EN)
Lien   Conférence Mondiale Villes et Ports
Lien   COVID-19, l’AIVP reste disponible!
Première brève (EN)
Lien   Building with Nature : des Solutions fondées sur la Nature pour faire face au changement climatique dans les territoires Ville Port
Lien   Première ressource test
Lien   Interface Ville Port : melting-pot des relations Ville Port

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