EcoPorts News

Ecoports News, November/December 2010

05 Dec 2010


Dear Ecoports network partner,

From January onwards Ecoports will be officially integrated within the structure of ESPO. This has been confirmed during the final board meeting of the EcoPorts Foundation which was held beginning of December.  The Foundation  is now dissolved  and the integration  marks the start of a new era regarding port environmental management and sustainability in Europe. The European port sector has achieved significant progress in the field of environmental management during the last fifteen years and this has been largely driven through the long standing close cooperation between ESPO and Ecoports. The new way forward is warmly welcomed by all parties involved as it is expected to drive further the achieved progress and the sector’s efforts through the principle of voluntary self regulation.

Consequently,  ESPO is now the party responsible for the management of the Ecoports network of ports and the management and dissemination of the well established Ecoports tools, i.e. the Self Diagnosis Methodology  (SDM) and the Port Environmental  Review System (PERS), within Europe and its neighbouring countries. The opening of the Ecoports tools to the whole ESPO membership is expected to encourage further their use by European ports and to broaden the Ecoports network. SDM and PERS are currently being updated and will be re-launched as part of the ESPO provided services by the beginning of 2011. In parallel, and as part of a broader project that aims at ensuring the quality and continuity of the Ecoports services, a new online system is being created for the management of the Ecoports network and the use of the tools. The new system will be owned by ESPO and will be officially launched during the Greenport conference in Venice 23-24 February 2011. It will be incorporating the new SDM as an online-based tool and will be providing visibility and credit to ports that achieve and maintain an “Ecoports port” status. The latter can be achieved by any port registering within the new system and completing the online SDM questionnaire, thus contributing in such way to the up-to-date maintenance of the European benchmark of performance in port environmental  management.  The  “Ecoports  port”  status  will  be  then  allowing  ports  to  access, implement  and  get  certified  by  PERS,  the  only  port  sector  specific  environmental  management standard.

ESPO is committed to maintain the Ecoports name and brand and to continue promoting the Ecoports guiding principle of sharing environmental experiences and best practices between port professionals in  Europe.  Under  the  new  set-up  ESPO  will  continue  working  in  close  cooperation  with  Cardiff University and Lloyds Register, the main partners involved in the processing and analysis of SDM and PERS respectively. In terms of ESPO internal organization, Ecoports will be regarded as an integral part of the Sustainable Development committee. Ports outside Europe and its neighbouring countries will still be able to use the Ecoports tools and the Ecoports PERS certificate through the services provided   by   a   newly   established   foundation;   ECO   Sustainable   Logistic   Chain   –   ECOSLC ( – website available beginning 2011)

Please do not hesitate to contact me for any further information regarding the integration of Ecoports within ESPO and associated practicalities, and/or any Ecoports enquiries or feedback, also related to the current newsletter.

With our best wishes for a very happy and prosperous New Year, Dr. Antonis Michail,
Ecoports Coordinator and Policy Advisor on Sustainable Development ESPO
Address: Treurenberg 6, 1000 Brussels
Tel : +32 (0)2 734 94 48 / Fax: +32 (0)2 736 63 25



Ecoports Network and Tools Update

The port of Brunsbuttel (Germany) has recently completed the SDM for the first time and submitted it to Ecoports for analysis and feedback. ESPO and Ecoports recommend strongly the regular use of SDM on a yearly basis. From January onwards the precondition for a port to achieve an “Ecoports status” will be the completion and submission of an SDM questionnaire. An SDM submission will be having a validity period of two years.   Ports that have submitted an SDM  within  2010  will  be  automatically  be  part  of  the network.

Ecoports congratulates the ABP ports of Grimsby and Immingham (UK) for being PERS re-certified after the positive evaluation of their application by Lloyds Register. Around 10 ports are currently in the process of PERS certification or re-certification. Ports from the Netherlands have recently applied for PERS certification and waiting for the evaluation by Lloyds. Ports from Cyprus, Croatia, Germany, Italy and the UK are in the process of implementing PERS while ports from Greece and Spain are soon expected to apply for re-certification. Ecoports would like to remind you that the PERS certificate is valid for a period of two years and to invite you to contact the secretariat regarding the re-certification process. Ports that hold a valid PERS certificate will be maintaining their “Ecoports port” status under the new set-up until its expiry date.

During a quite busy 2010 bearing in mind its transitional nature, 4 additional ports joined the Ecoports network, 6 ports have completed an SDM questionnaire, 4 ports have achieved PERS certification for the first time, while 5 ports have been successfully re-certified.


Ambitious goals for the ESPO Green Guide

 The Sustainable Development Committee of ESPO is currently working on  updating   the  ESPO   Environmental   Code  of  Practice   that  was published back in 2003. The new ESPO Green Guide will be re- establishing   the  vision  of  the  sector  on  sustainability   and  will  be identifying common ways for implementing environmental ambitions. The aim  is  to  go  a  step  further  from  the  previous  editions  in  defining concretely what port responsible practices are in facing the main environmental challenges of the sector. For that, a more “thematic” approach is set to be followed focusing on priority issues such as energy consumption and carbon footprinting, air quality management, noise management, waste and water management.

For the selected priority areas of interest, the instruments that are commonly  available  in  the  disposition  of  port  authorities  for  either
controlling or indirectly influencing the environmental performance of the port area will be examined while good practises will be identified and demonstrated. The aim is not only to provide guidance but also to define the principles that guide responsible port authority response options. The process of producing  the  new  guide  is  open  actively  involving  environmental  experts  from  different  ports  in Europe.  If you wish to participate  to the discussions  and be part of any of the above mentioned “thematic”  areas  of work,  please  do not hesitate  to contact  us. The  new ESPO  Green  Guide  is expected to be published within 2011.