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The Transition to Sustainable Shipping and Ports

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Sustainable Transportation".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2021) | Viewed by 18916

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Guest Editor
Department of International & European Economic Studies, Athens University of Economics and Business, Athens, Greece
Interests: resource and energy economics and econometrics; sustainable development and innovation; interdisciplinary approaches for sustainable development; climate change modeling and policy
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Seas and oceans affect our daily lives, being not only a critical source of food, energy, and resources but also providing the majority of Europe's trade routes, thereby supporting jobs and national economies and serving as a highway for transportation of goods and people. Ports are places where multiple systems collide (shipping, energy, waste, tourism, and other transport). Ports can either be emissions hotspots or hubs able to drive enormous change. To achieve this potential, this Special Issue seeks papers that combine a systems innovation approach with multi-annual expertise on blue growth, maritime research and entrepreneurship in order to co-design a port innovations portfolio and financial tools that will drive the sustainable transition of both sectors of shipping and ports. The IPCC report explicitly refers to the need for “rapid far-reaching and unprecedented changes in all aspects of society.” Incremental changes will not be enough. What is needed now is a fundamental transformation of economic, social, and financial systems that will trigger an exponential change in strengthening social, economic, health, and environmental resilience. We need big thinking and big changes. System innovation and transitions thinking can help and calls for intense public participation.

Through a demand-led approach, working with organisations willing to take on the responsibility of acting as ‘problem owners’ and committed to zero-net emissions, resilient futures, deep demonstrations progress in tightly designed, iterative phases - steps of rolling out systems innovation-as-a-service, aiming at the identification of the key actors to be involved, current status, vision, innovation needs, sustainable financial planning and ultimately at the alignment of all actors able to drive systems transition to a low-carbon emissions future. It is a circular approach in innovation implementation with a final goal the holistic change of the port and the shipping sector to Sustainability. Four research projects that are granted by the European Commission are Deep Demonstrations for Zero-Net Emissions in the port of Piraeus, Oceans of Tomorrow (H20CEAN, TROPOS, MERMAID), which together with two UN SDSN Greece Initiatives, the 4-Seas Initiative and the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Shipping, focus on developing technologically and financially efficient, environmentally sustainable, and socio-economically acceptable paths to sustainability.

Prof. Dr. Phoebe Koundouri
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

27 pages, 1945 KiB  
Article
A Roadmap towards the Decarbonization of Shipping: A Participatory Approach in Cyprus
by Olympia Nisiforou, Louisa Marie Shakou, Afroditi Magou and Alexandros G. Charalambides
Sustainability 2022, 14(4), 2185; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14042185 - 15 Feb 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 4458
Abstract
Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from human activities are driving climate change and are currently at their highest levels in history. The international community, through the United Nations process, places great emphasis on the decarbonisation of our economies across all sectors. GHG emissions from [...] Read more.
Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from human activities are driving climate change and are currently at their highest levels in history. The international community, through the United Nations process, places great emphasis on the decarbonisation of our economies across all sectors. GHG emissions from maritime transport, even if considered the most carbon efficient method of transportation, are projected to increase if no action is taken to decarbonise, and thus pressure has extended to the maritime sector to contribute to the significant GHG emission cuts necessary. The paths by which the maritime sector can contribute to the achievement of the international target of GHG reduction by 2050 are still being determined, but numerous promising options exist. This paper aims to provide an overview of action towards decarbonisation by the international maritime sector, and to assess how Cyprus, an important flag state, can contribute to decarbonisation efforts. A participatory approach was used, through implementation of the EIT Climate-KIC’s Deep Demonstrations methodology, as part of the ‘ Zero-Net Emissions, Resilient Maritime Hubs in Cyprus’ project. The results were used to identify a portfolio of actions related to policy and regulatory development, education and re-skilling, technological development, and operation optimisation, which can support the decarbonisation of the maritime sector in Cyprus. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Transition to Sustainable Shipping and Ports)
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19 pages, 2360 KiB  
Article
Environmental Mainstreaming in Greek TEN-T Ports
by Constantinos Chlomoudis, Petros Pallis and Charalampos Platias
Sustainability 2022, 14(3), 1634; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14031634 - 30 Jan 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2522
Abstract
Along with recent fundamental changes in several aspects of the port industry, ports come up against formidable environmental challenges. It is thus important and often imperative to mainstream environmental concerns in their operation, planning, and development; improve their environmental performance; and make the [...] Read more.
Along with recent fundamental changes in several aspects of the port industry, ports come up against formidable environmental challenges. It is thus important and often imperative to mainstream environmental concerns in their operation, planning, and development; improve their environmental performance; and make the transition to sustainable production and consumption patterns. The industry’s greening is largely underpinned by European Union (EU) transport and port policy, with major European initiatives such as the Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T), the European Green Deal, and Blue Growth expected to give new impetus. This paper examines environmental mainstreaming in Greek TEN-T ports and their ability to cope with upcoming challenges based on questionnaire responses by 23 port authorities and taking into account the relevant progress made by ESPO port members. We argue that all respondents have gradually become aware of the need to move towards an environment-friendly operation and development, but progress is slow, and there is still a lot to be done. Performances vary and depend on different factors, while ports are faced with significant challenges and various constraints. Nevertheless, new environmental standards present a real opportunity for Greek ports to undertake deep structural changes, especially in view of current and future European port policy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Transition to Sustainable Shipping and Ports)
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20 pages, 2897 KiB  
Article
Evaluating the Efficacy of Sustainability Initiatives in the Canadian Port Sector
by Jennifer L. MacNeil, Michelle Adams and Tony R. Walker
Sustainability 2022, 14(1), 373; https://doi.org/10.3390/su14010373 - 30 Dec 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2064
Abstract
Maritime ports are critical nodes in the Canadian resource-based economy that can have significant environmental impacts near coastal communities and marine ecosystems. To address these impacts, Canadian Port Authorities (CPAs) assess their environmental performance using the Green Marine Environmental Program (GMEP). Reliance on [...] Read more.
Maritime ports are critical nodes in the Canadian resource-based economy that can have significant environmental impacts near coastal communities and marine ecosystems. To address these impacts, Canadian Port Authorities (CPAs) assess their environmental performance using the Green Marine Environmental Program (GMEP). Reliance on this program necessitates its evaluation as an effective initiative to address sustainability in its broader context. An analysis was performed to identify links between United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDG) targets relevant to the Canadian Port Sector and GMEP performance indicators. Results indicate that there are significant gaps in the GMEP, with only 14 of 36 relevant SDG targets directly linked to the program. Findings suggest either an expansion of the GMEP to incorporate these broader sustainability goals, or the development and inclusion of a new framework for CPAs to bridge gaps between the GMEP and SDG targets to improve sustainability in their maritime port operations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Transition to Sustainable Shipping and Ports)
21 pages, 1872 KiB  
Article
Addressing Efficiency and Sustainability in the Port of the Future with 5G: The Experience of the Livorno Port. A Methodological Insight to Measure Innovation Technologies’ Benefits on Port Operations
by Laura Cavalli, Giulia Lizzi, Luciano Guerrieri, Antonella Querci, Francescalberto De Bari, Gregorio Barbieri, Silvia Ferrini, Riccardo Di Meglio, Rossella Cardone, Alexandr Tardo, Paolo Pagano, Andrea Tesei and Domenico Lattuca
Sustainability 2021, 13(21), 12146; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132112146 - 03 Nov 2021
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 3546
Abstract
Relying on the international 2030 Agenda and specifically applying sustainable development’s triple bottom line to port operations, innovation technologies enabled by 5G transformation have shown to serve as a junction point between the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the port’s Key Performance [...] Read more.
Relying on the international 2030 Agenda and specifically applying sustainable development’s triple bottom line to port operations, innovation technologies enabled by 5G transformation have shown to serve as a junction point between the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the port’s Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). In order to measure economic, social and financial benefits deriving from 5G networks and digital transformation, a piloted technology model has been shaped with the final aim of designing new models of port management and operational planning, and of implementing sustainable port growth policies. Such an assessment finally represents a crucial means to enhance technological advancements on port competitiveness and efficiency, and to boost sustainability performance by supporting public policies and business decisions, finally leading to the development of the port of the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Transition to Sustainable Shipping and Ports)
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17 pages, 307 KiB  
Article
Development of Framework for Improved Sustainability in the Canadian Port Sector
by Jennifer L. MacNeil, Michelle Adams and Tony R. Walker
Sustainability 2021, 13(21), 11980; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132111980 - 29 Oct 2021
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 2514
Abstract
Canada Port Authorities (CPAs) are federal entities responsible for managing Canadian Ports with local, national, and international strategic importance. Despite their connection to the Government of Canada, the CPAs inconsistently report sustainability performance and are absent from Canada’s Federal Sustainable Development Strategy (FSDS)—a [...] Read more.
Canada Port Authorities (CPAs) are federal entities responsible for managing Canadian Ports with local, national, and international strategic importance. Despite their connection to the Government of Canada, the CPAs inconsistently report sustainability performance and are absent from Canada’s Federal Sustainable Development Strategy (FSDS)—a national strategy to operationalize the United Nation’s (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Sustainability initiatives currently used by CPAs only contribute towards attaining 14 of 36 relevant SDG targets, suggesting the need for an additional sustainability framework to achieve the remainder of these targets. This paper proposes a port-specific framework based on disclosures from the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) to fill performance gaps in current sustainability initiatives. Disclosures were selected in an iterative process based on literature and industry best practices. The framework provides a unified approach for both CPAs and policymakers to attain SDG targets relevant to the Canadian port sector and align sustainability performance with Canada’s FSDS. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Transition to Sustainable Shipping and Ports)
16 pages, 1528 KiB  
Article
Environmental Disclosure: Study on Efficiency and Alignment with Environmental Priorities of Spanish Ports
by Emma Castelló-Taliani, Silvia Giralt Escobar and Fabricia Silva da Rosa
Sustainability 2021, 13(4), 1791; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13041791 - 07 Feb 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1652
Abstract
The purpose of this article is to analyze, in a three-stage research project and from an economic an operational perspective, the relationships between environmental expenses, the improvements achieved in five environmental variables analyzed and efficiency. To achieve these objectives, we analyze sustainability reports [...] Read more.
The purpose of this article is to analyze, in a three-stage research project and from an economic an operational perspective, the relationships between environmental expenses, the improvements achieved in five environmental variables analyzed and efficiency. To achieve these objectives, we analyze sustainability reports and economic data from 24 Spanish ports. The three aforementioned stages of this research are the following: first, the analysis of the sustainability reports to determine the level of information; second, the analysis of the economic and operational efficiency; and, third, the analysis of the alignment with the environmental priorities of the Eco Ports-ESPO (European Sea Ports Organization). The results reveal that (1) the type of traffic does not affect environmental actions; (2) environmental performance (improvements) depends on environmental expenditures; (3) environmental spending and efficiency in port operations are correlated; and (4) environmental spending and port economic efficiency are correlated. The research can contribute to the decision-making process of port managers by revealing that the alignment with the EcoPorts priorities can be important to direct the environmental performance of the ports towards the global interests revealed in this indicator. It also reveals that environmental expenditures and investments may be related to environmental performance and economic and operational efficiency. However, it also reveals that it is important to improve the extent of environmental disclosure to better explain the qualitative and monetary characteristics of each piece of information provided about environmental performance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Transition to Sustainable Shipping and Ports)
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