ABOUT PIONEERS

PIONEERS addresses the challenges faced by European ports to reduce their environmental impact while remaining competitive in a sector characterised by continuous growth.

These challenges are aligned with the European Green Deal’s main objective to make Europe climate neutral by 2050.

 

The Port of Antwerp-Bruges operates the biggest port area in the world and is pioneering in the efforts towards a climate neutral port. For this reason, PIONEERS will build on the commitment of the Port of Antwerp-Bruges to scale-up the current state-of-the-art and to demonstrate applicability and feasibility through several demonstrations, acting as a lighthouse for EU ports. The Port of Barcelona, Constanta and Venlo, on the other hand, represent the ideal mix of size, location, operation models and area of influence to test these demonstrations, during the project lifecycle.

PIONEERS addresses the challenges faced by European ports to reduce their environmental impact while remaining competitive in a sector characterised by continuous growth.

These challenges are aligned with the European Green Deal’s main objective to make Europe climate neutral by 2050.

 

The Port of Antwerp operates the biggest port area in the world and is pioneering in the efforts towards a climate neutral port. For this reason, PIONEERS will build on the commitment of the Port of Antwerp to scale-up the current state-of-the-art and to demonstrate applicability and feasibility through several demonstrations, acting as a lighthouse for EU ports. The Port of Barcelona, Constanta and Venlo, on the other hand, represent the ideal mix of size, location, operation models and area of influence to test these demonstrations, during the project lifecycle.

OBJECTIVES

In order to accomplish the PIONEERS’s strategic goal and vision, a set of five objectives have been defined:

Slide 1. Reduce the port’s total environmental footprint by introducing Clean Energy production, storage, and supply.

The European Ports have the potential to become key points of energy production based on renewable energy sources, benefiting the energy portfolio of the area while deriving the benefits as energy users.

 

PIONEERS will play a key role by creating several solutions to reach this objective.

 

Moreover, during PIONEERS, one of the first demonstrations regarding hydrogen for heating buildings will take place, therefore contributing to the European ports’ ability to become a centre for energy production, storage, and supply, as well as a decarbonisation hub.

Slide Deploy sustainable port infrastructure beyond energy supply and demand.
2.

Port operations require significant infrastructure – such as buildings, quays, roads, and equipment – that affects beyond energy supply, storage, and demand. Therefore, hydrogen will be used to replace natural gas required for heating the port buildings, hence reducing CO2 emissions.

 

Moreover, by linking ecological impact to the lifespan of building materials, PIONEERS hopes to reveal the optimal deployment scenarios to reduce ecological impact of road structures servicing the ports.

 

This objective will enable the European ports to introduce alternative fuels for their yard vehicles, reduce the environmental impact of port infrastructure, promote effective and green land use, and provide the means for continuous improvement towards achieving climate neutrality

Slide Introduce eco-friendly improvements relying on digitalisation and new methods of operation.
3.

Modern ports have evolved into multimodal hubs and logistics nodes connecting maritime with road, rail, and inland waterways flows. PIONEERS will demonstrate highly efficient logistics operations for integrated sea/river-port hinterland connections through several demonstrations that enable modal shifts and system-wide door-to-door multimodal passenger mobility and freight transport.

 

A Digital Twin supporting port operations decision making in relation to environmental impact, as well as a 3D representation of real time port activities will reveal opportunities that will allow the continuous improvement of the PIONEERS’ demonstrations.

 

In order to develop eco-friendly and financially viable transport alternatives, a multimodal route planner for port commuters and cargo flows will be demonstrated, as well as the monitorization of real-time traffic flow. 

 

Additionally, autonomous vehicles will be introduced allowing the optimal transport of trailers to operational points while hoping to prove the positive effects of this automated vessel technology in the Port of Antwerp-Bruges. 

 

Lastly, to ensure cyber-resilience jointly with all the stakeholders of the ports’ communities, the cyber-security risks will be analysed

Slide Co-define and transfer PIONEERS’ demonstrations to fellow ports during the project lifecycle. 4.

By developing collaboration networks and public-private partnerships, the focus will be on defining, adopting, and deploying a selection of project demos at the fellow European ports during the project lifecycle. Therefore, PIONEERS will define a framework for co-definition and execution of the 19 demonstrations conducted and co-transfer and scale them up at fellow ports and beyond. 

 

PIONEERS will liaise with more than twenty-nine nationally and privately European funded projects as Linked Actions (LA) to enable the alignment and scale-up of innovation and to accelerate synergies, as well as the realisation of combined benefits.

 

The definition of viable innovations will be ensured, not only by outlining and addressing technical, socioeconomic, safety and sustainable challenges, barriers, and opportunities but also by mobilising stakeholders – such as public and port authorities, representative bodies and terminal operators, freight forwarders, transport companies and cruise and tour operators

Slide Deliver and disseminate a Port Master Plan for the transition towards GHG-neutral shipping and wider multimodal mobility by 2050. 5.

A Green Port Roadmap, defined by PIONEERS, will be adopted in order to adjust the Master Plans of the 4 participating European ports during the project lifecycle. Moreover, it will also recommend updates for local port Master Plans by proposing feasible alternatives with the highest emission reduction potential, taking into consideration governance, operational and legal frameworks, business models and financial viability.

 

The Green Port Roadmap will be publicly available and disseminated through the engagement of the community, as well as through the available dissemination channels and liaising with related projects. The PIONEERS’ consortium members will also share the experiences and results of the projects, thus fostering extensive European ports and cross-industry take-up.

 

The PIONEERS’ achievements, such as regulatory recommendations, business models of services for energy production and supply, smart logistics chain, as well as automated vehicles operation and dynamic vessel flows, will provide a solid base for European ports to streamline their actions towards meeting the targets set by the European Green Deal. Moreover, the Green Port Master Plans will also include milestones for 2030 to 2050 performance towards GHG neutral shipping and minimal pollution in maritime and inland port areas