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Port of Antwerp plays pioneering role in collection of ship’s waste

The Port of Antwerp hosted an international workshop on port facilities for ship's waste and cargo residues. Antwerp has an excellent reputation for collection of ship's waste.

While shipping is by far the most energy-efficient mode of transport, it nevertheless has an impact on the environment. There is a mass of regulations, both European and international, placing restrictions on pollution by shipping. The port of Antwerp for its part has taken a whole series of initiatives to promote the collection of ship’s waste. Indeed, the port of Antwerp is recognised around the world as “best in class” in this area.

Ships calling at the port of Antwerp are given incentives and encouraged in every way to dispose of their waste properly rather than simply dumping it at sea. The fact that Antwerp has opted for a free market approach when it comes to the collection companies, has also had a favourable effect on waste management. The quantity of ship’s waste collected, in particular oil residues, has risen significantly as a result in the past few years. Since the present regulations were introduced in 2006, up to 40% of ships calling at Antwerp present waste for collection.

It is hardly surprising, therefore, that the International Maritime Organization (IMO), the Regional Marine Pollution Emergency Response Centre for the Mediterranean Sea and the Public Flemish Waste Company chose Antwerp as the venue for an international conference on ship’s waste and cargo residues, held from 27 to 29 November in collaboration with Antwerp Port Authority. The fact that IMO organised such a workshop in Belgium is a “first,” demonstrating the importance of Antwerp in this area. The focus of the workshop, attended by some 50 international experts from 20 or so countries, was on sharing “best practices” with countries on the southern and eastern seaboards of the Mediterranean.

Tine Vandendriessche
Gemeentelijk Havenbedrijf Antwerpen
Tel: +32 3 205 20 41
Fax: +32 3 205 23 29
Mob: +32 495 58 05 97

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