How to reduce emissions in maritime ports? An overview of cargo handling innovations and port services

31 October 2022 - Published by Evite van Winkoop
Sergey Tsiulin works as a PhD researcher at the University of Aalborg, his focus is the shipping & supply chain industry. Last month he presented the paper: “How to reduce emissions in maritime ports? An overview of cargo handling innovations and port services” at the IntelliSys 2022 conference.

Previously in BLING we discovered the possibilities of blockchain technologies for supply chains and maritime logistics. We found that blockchain as a distributed database can contribute to creation of port network, provide an opportunity to speed up and facilitate communication between port parties. For this article, Sergey explored what other innovations are happening in a maritime port, mostly associated with port cargo handling equipment. Most ports tend to grow and expand their infrastructure, but what about the equipment they use? So the purpose of the article is to introduce not only cargo equipment, but the innovations happening within each segment of this equipment: at the berth (where ships moor), at the crane area, at container storage and upon exist at the gates.

The literature analysis focused on energy transition and emission reduction – if ports try to be efficient digitally-wise, what about the cargo equipment then? The findings showed that ports are undergoing major changes in terms of energy usage. Ports try to embed electric or hybrid engines for quay and storage cranes. Also, better plan the landside power to reduce emissions from upcoming vessels, design and better structure the use of the land and yard space – to have higher efficiency and utilization rate. Importantly, blockchain is projected to be used at the port gates – to have better control over what truck is going in and what it is taking.

In the end, those actions contribute positively to environmental effect which can transform port areas into more city- and urban-friendly locations. The full research, with details about port equipment and its features as well as problems and future prospects will be published soon.