The third annual joint environmental initiative launched by marine terminal operators APM Terminals, DP World, Hutchison Ports, Port of Rotterdam Authority (PRA), PSA International and Shanghai International Port Group (SIPG) wrapped-up on 18 September following a busy week of green activities around the globe.
In keeping with the programme’s central idea that the entire industry should join hands to tackle environmental concerns, numerous joint activities took place in key ports ranging from Buenos Aires and Rotterdam to Busan.
In some locations, local shipping companies were invited to take part in events that covered everything from planting trees to collecting trash. Community involvement is an integral part of Go Green and numerous activities involved local students, NGOs, non-profit organisations and government departments.
Following the structure established last year, the campaign activities revolved around the three main themes of: reuse and recycle; climate change; the community.
APM Terminals and the APM Terminals Global Terminal Network saw a variety of participation around the world as part of this year’s “Go Green Week” program. At APM Terminals Algeciras, Spain – activities included hosting over one hundred local school children who were invited to see how the busiest container terminal on the Mediterranean Sea has recycled 80% of its waste. The school children were also invited to take part in efforts to make a count of endangered wildlife in the Algeciras Bay, as well as a hike in the nearby El Strecho (The Strait) Natural Park, to learn about the coastal ecosystem. Other APM Terminals’ sponsored activities included the launching of an electric car charging station at Shanghai East Container Terminal, in which APM Terminals holds a 49% share, in China; the distribution of seeds for trees to school children in Brazil; the installation of power and water-saving devices in Bahrain; and the clearing of litter from a sensitive mangrove area in Buenaventura, Colombia.
Over 3000 DP World volunteers took part in Go Green initiatives across 29 countries this year, building on the past two years of successful collaboration with the world’s leading port operators to engage communities and people in promoting environmental awareness. DP World employees volunteered 5859 hours of their time on various initiatives from cycling to work to school visits to educate local children on the environment. A total of 2241 trees were planted during the week at tree planting sessions in schools, local areas, community gardens, protected eco-sites and terminal gardens. Over 200,000 kg of litter was collected off local beaches across the week.
Tree planting was central to the activities carried out by Hutchison Ports. These activities took a wide variety of forms, including planting and weeding activities in nature reserves to protect biodiversity; planting marine trees to prevent soil erosion; teaching local students how to plant and care for vegetable seedlings; taking part in a charity run to raise money for foresting a national park; and planting trees in various public areas to increase green spaces. Clean-up activities were held at a number of coastal areas, with the collected trash segregated for recycling.
On Friday 16 September, some 50 employees of APM Terminals, Europe Container Terminals (Hutchison Ports), Rotterdam World Gateway (DP World) and the Port of Rotterdam Authority rolled up their sleeves and set to work at Mildenburg Estate in the Netherlands to retain the open habitat for a number of special dune species in the coastal area near the port.
PSA ports around the world engaged in a diverse array of Go Green activities to foster positive environmental change and heighten the engagement of employees to this cause. Activities included conservation of the ecosystem, through planting trees and mangroves, releasing crabs back into their natural habitat, the clean-up of work and public areas such as terminals, offices, local parks and beaches, as well as recycling projects in offices around the world. In total, 1286 seedlings were planted and 39 tons of used items were collected for recycling.
APM Terminals CEO Kim Fejfer said, “Sensitivity to the environment, and environmentally sustainable practices are becoming more widespread across our industry, we are very proud to be leaders in this area. The Go Green initiative is a great way for us to involve the entire community in our efforts.”
DP World Group Chairman and CEO, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, said: “I’m very pleased that an initiative we pioneered two years ago with just one other partner has today grown to include thousands of our fellow industry colleagues across the globe. DP World is committed to sustainability through our ongoing campaign ‘Our World, Our Future’ and we believe that working responsibly is essential to building a strong business for our customers, people and society. To build a legacy is also at the core of our business philosophy – ensuring everything we do leaves long-term benefits for the world we live in. I look forward to watching this programme flourish over the coming years, demonstrating to the world that partnerships and collaboration will help us all achieve our goals for sustainable development.”
Hutchison Ports Group Managing Director Eric Ip said, “The third year of this successful event was marked by increased levels of participation at our container terminal operations around the globe. By aligning the various green activities organised by all the participants over the course of a single week, we hope to show by example that environmental concerns are something everybody needs to work together to achieve.”
Port of Rotterdam Authority CEO Allard Castelein said, “The Port Authority aims to make Rotterdam the most sustainable port of the world. This means that we are happy to support initiatives like Go Green.”
PSA International Group CEO Tan Chong Meng said, “At PSA, we see the Go Green efforts as a crucial part of contributing back to the communities in which we operate and reminding all of us of our role in bettering our environment and ensuring its sustainability. We encourage our staff to continually look-out for opportunities to recycle, reduce wastage and decrease our carbon footprint, not just during the Go Green Week but throughout the year. By coordinating these efforts alongside like-minded players which operate terminals in different parts of the world, we hope to raise the awareness that environmental preservation is the collective responsibility of industry leaders. Together, our actions make a critical difference to our environment.”
SIPG chairman Chen Xuyuan said, “Go green project has seen the third year of efforts in the major global ports, where Go green week marked the determination of all participants. Go green has been melted into our daily practice, not a single day or week campaign any longer. SIPG are making every effort to reduce waste, promote recycling and raise environmental awareness, which definitely help bring long term sustainable benefits to the communities.”