Dredging Leader to Pursue Ambitious Emissions Target


Jan De Nul Group, one of the largest providers of dredging services for port and terminal projects, has announced its commitment to cut CO2 emissions by 15% a year.

According to a statement, Jan De Nul is the first dredging company in the world to target such a reduction, the goal set as part of an application to carry out maintenance dredging works in the Nieuwpoort coastal marina.

Jan De Nul has revealed that it won the contract for this project by promising to reduce carbon emissions, an unprecedented move within the sector.

Bryan Comer examines the path towards zero-emission shipping in a recent Port Technology technical paper

The project is also said to be aligned with Jan De Nul’s aim of rolling out a sector-wide CO₂ emission reduction programme, the company hoping to include a minimum requirement of 15% CO₂ reduction in 80% of Flanders’ maintenance dredging contracts by 2020.

A key focus area for Jan De Nul, as it plans ways of reaching its target, is drop-in biofuel, an alternative to fossil diesel which is described as “high quality”, sustainable, an inexpensive for the company as engines do not have to be adapted or replaced in order to use it.

Nathalie Balcaen, CEO of the Agency for Maritime and Coastal Services (MDK) within the Flemish government, said: “As a maritime authority within the Flemish government, we want to focus on reducing our environmental footprint in every possible way.

“We therefore pay particular attention to green criteria when we define specifications for the market. This already leads to concrete CO₂ reduction today, particularly by paying attention to ecological performance during dredging works and to the contractors with whom we cooperate.” 



Bart Praet, Head of Dredging Works Benelux department at Jan De Nul Group, also commented: “We want to make the utmost effort and, in doing so, inspire other companies in our sector to focus on energy or CO₂ reduction measures.

“We are therefore delighted to be engaged in dialogue with the Flemish government and the non-profit organization Vlaamse Waterbouwers VZW, and are working closely together with Zero Emission Solutions and the advanced sustainable fuel sector.”

The Flemish pilot project will commence in September 2019 and last until September 2022, and it is expected that companies will be awarded contracts if they make a genuine effort to offer maximum quality, minimal CO₂ emissions and a fair price.

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