EcoPorts News

Greek and Italian Ports Achieve High Environmental Recognition

26 Feb 2013

On 20 February, ESPO awarded five new PERS certificates during a seminar held in Piraeus. ESPO congratulates the Greek ports of Corfu, Lagos, Kavala and Volos, and the Italian port of Piombino for this significant achievement.

The Port Environmental Review System (PERS) is the only port sector specific environmental management standard. PERS is the flagship product of the EcoPorts network. It is offered as part of the ESPO services to its members. PERS is independently audited and certified by Lloyd’s Register.

The five small and medium size ports joined EcoPorts and achieved PERS certification as part of their participation to the EC co-funded SuPorts project, focusing on the sustainable management of European local ports. SuPorts is a European INTERREG IVC project which aims to assist local ports in the implementation of environmental strategies and to facilitate their access to suitable environmental management tools,  enabling them to remain competitive by contributing to a more sustainable EU. The PERS award ceremony and embracing event was kindly hosted by the University of Piraeus and organised by the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, both partners and contributors to the SuPorts project.

ESPO Secretary General Patrick Verhoeven handed out the certificates to the representatives of the five ports, highlighting that it is the first time that ESPO has the pleasure to award such a number of certificates in one go and congratulating the whole project consortium for this achievement.

The port of Piombino is the first ever Italian port that achieves PERS certification. The four Greek ports join the already certified ports of Piraeus and Thessaloniki and raise the number of Greek ports holding a valid PERS certificate to six. Greek ports are clearly the champions of PERS, accounting for six out of the total of 16 certificates that were awarded in the course of the last two years. “I pay tribute to the Greek ports for their continuous commitment to environmental management and support to the EcoPorts tools”, said ESPO Secretary General Patrick Verhoeven. “PERS is progressing very well and ESPO is looking forward to congratulating soon five more ports that are currently in the pipeline of being PERS certified”, he added. 

The successful event in Piraeus was welcomed by the Greek Secretary General of Ports and Port Policy, Konstantinos Moutzouris and attracted various participants including local authorities, port professionals and academia. ESPO Policy Advisor Antonis Michail presented the overall approach of ESPO on port environmental management, focusing on the positive contribution of EcoPorts and the recently published ESPO Green Guide. “The positive trends that European ports demonstrate in terms of environmental performance, are seen as triggering factors that inspire the ports to continuously work towards achieving further improvement”, said Antonis Michail.