Port & City: the parallel sessions

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The parallel sessions, organised during the conference Port & City: Connected Energy in Zaanstad, attracted a lot of attention. Specialists from harbour cities all over Europe zoomed in on energy matters in ports. Read on to access their inspiring presentations, and the policy recommendations that can be derived from these international projects.

Short summaries of the parallel sessions:

Carla Jong, Port of Amsterdam. The Port of Amsterdam showed how global chains currently lead to local pains. The port of Amsterdam aims to turn these pains into gains. The port of Amsterdam is currently an energy port, with 75% of throughput being energy products. Amsterdam’s vision as a metropolitan port is to become the connection for trade, industry and urban activity, thereby stimulating renewable energy and a circular, biobased economy. In the Port of Amsterdam raw materials, cargo, residual flows, energy, data, people and ideas all come together, new technologies are given a chance, and there is the scope for experimentation. The forces of the port, the city and the region are combined. This is a strong basis for the circular economy, interconnectedness between flows and industries with added benefits of economies of scale, crosspollination and innovation.Presentation Amsterdam Port & City Zaanstad

Peter Wolbert, Cofely on District Heating in Zaanstad. Develop a district heating network for an existing housing district including schools and a municipal bathing pool. That is the goal of a consortium of companies and institutions in Zaanstad. Initially, the heat will be provided by a biomass plant and a water treatment facility that employs a heat pump to upgrade the heat gained from sewage water. Innovative techniques that ask for additional investments. District heating greatly helps to reduce CO2 emissions, and is economically feasible too. But it takes relatively long to pay back the initial investment (10 to 15 years). Peter Wolbert demonstrated that to make this type of projects work, the role of local government is very important. First of all in providing the initial push and the funding to start building the system. But also in creating confidence among participants (both providers and customers of energy) that the network will be realized, and will reach the lifespan needed to become really profitable for all parties involved. Reliability on the long term seems an important issue for all partners, diversification can ensure this, but requires a larger amount of organizational involvement. presentation Cofely Port&City

Ellen Corke, City of Malmö & Charlotte Hauksson, WSP present various initiatives, the Smart Homes project: combining smart grids, renewable energy and electric mobility. In the Northern Harbour excess and renewable heat are made available for the district heating grid. Malmö is active in starting up a stakeholder platform and finding opportunities for new forms of cooperation connected to untapped resource flows. This provides the basis for “Shared Energy doubles the force”. In this project 12 partners with connections to the port area – industries, public/port authorities, academia and knowledge institutes co-operate, the city facilitates. “You need a strong company to make things move”, in Malmö E.ON has driven this process initially, other industries followed. The government can be a facilitator, making things happen. Malmö wants to find out how to attract ‘right’ companies which can add value. This requires investigation, communication and initiative, no ‘one fits all’ solution. Barriers consist of a focus on own interest of organisations, short view and lack of knowledge about industrial symbiosis, risk avoiding behaviour and adverse economic situations. Overcoming barriers requires practical examples and good communication in order to find shared goals. Malmö wants to learn from projects in other countries and attract new, innovative companies.Presentation Malmö Port & City

Peter Geertse, commercial manager at Zeeland Seaports/Biopark Terneuzen. BioPark Terneuzen is an impressive example of industrial ecology, in a comparatively small industrial zone between the giant harbours of Rotterdam and Antwerp. This case shows how an active port authority can make the industrial zone more sustainable, more competitive, and more attractive to new industries. At the Biopark, industrial companies like Cargill (starch) and Yara (fertilizer) exchange surplus heat, CO2 and Hydrogen gas with surrounding companies. Peter Geertse presented a clear picture of the crucial role the port authority plays in bringing parties together, helping to remove obstacles that hinder the cooperation. The newest addition is a number of greenhouses, where products like tomatoes and paprika will be raised using excess heat and CO2 from the industries. The port actively scouts companies that can fill the gaps in the chains of recycling and value creation, creating a higher added value in the whole industrial chain.Presentation Biopark Terneuzen Port&City

Nicolas Mat of the Port of Marseille explains how the concept of industrial ecology can be applied to facilitate the transition from a specialized and growth-oriented port towards a diverse and low carbon one. The aim is to intensify the connections between 3 main local subsystems (Industry, Agriculture & the Urban area) included in the Metropolitan area. Some measures have been implemented and others are currently developed, such as the PIICTO platform (Steam network, Circular economy, Innovation i.e. power-to-gas and biofuels). In order to implement this innovative platform, several local stakeholders are involved (companies, port and public authorities, academics, etc.), that introduce strong issues in terms of new form of governance.
Challenges remain the complexity of organization in terms of scale and diversity, the mapping of flows and connecting stakeholders, and last but not least the large distance between industrial Port area and Marseille city. This experiences provides practical examples and insights into innovative regional eco-industrial development strategies for moving toward a low-carbon future in industrial port areas. Presentation Marseille Port & City

Juliette Duszynski of the Town Planning Agency of Le Havre presents an Industrial Network Tool, a Decision Support System integrating energy, economy, logistics and environment. The tool models the territory through added value links: the exchange and the interrelations between industrial sites, between ports and industrial sites and between ports themselves. Challenges address the complexity of the networks and the path to real implementation. Besides further implementation next steps consider the broader sharing of this tool with regions who face similar problems and the creation of networks for sharing knowledge and functionalities. presentation Le Havre Port&City

Participants in the e-harbours conference also got the chance to play the Serious Game HEAT, commissioned by energy distributor Alliander. HEAT is a serious game in which you design, together with other stakeholders, a district heating network in a virtual 3D world. Normally, the development of such a network is complicated, because the consequences of plans are unclear. HEAT offers you feedback on several aspects like CO2-reduction and costs. It makes the design of a heating network transparant. Playing this game you learn how to design a heating network. See a short explanation here.

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