Maritime and inland shipping

Maritime shipping is of vital importance for our globalized economy and a key driver of economic prosperity in the Netherlands. Compared with other modes of transport, its environmental footprint is also relatively modest. Maritime shipping still has its impacts, though, particularly with regard to greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution. To help ensure that growth of maritime shipping does not exacerbate these problems further, we crunch the numbers on environmental impacts and design climate policies for the sector. 

Inland shipping

The air-polluting emissions of inland shipping are currently in the spotlight. Although abatement technologies are widely available, the relatively high investment costs and tight market are holding back developments. CE Delft has plenty of expertise on how to reduce the environmental impact of barges and other inland vessels . We have carried out projects in this realm for a wide range of clients, including the European Commission, the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and Environment, the Directorate-General for Public Works & Water Manage¬ment (IDVV programme) and the Zuid-Holland provincial executive. For the last of these parties we conducted a study to identify the most effective means of improving air quality. CE Delft has also designed a subsidy scheme for greener vessels. Besides being fully conversant with the air pollution and energy dossiers, we also have experience with the gas-venting issue in inland shipping. For more information, feel free to contact Matthijs Otten.


Today, seaports are keen to promote cleaner and more fuel-efficient shipping. CE Delft is there to provide support and its experts are involved in a number of major projects, including Maasvlakte 2, the extension of Rotterdam Port, and construction of the new sea lock for the Port of Amsterdam. CE Delft has a wealth of expertise on how to make ports and their industrial complexes more sustainable. That know-how relates not only to cutting the emissions of sea-going vessels  and making hinterland transport more sustainable, but also to reducing the environmental footprint of port industries.

Greener seaports, with advice from CE Delft
In collaboration with the six main north-west European seaports, CE Delft has developed the Environmental Ship Index (ESI), a standardized measure of a ship’s environmental performance. This will enable differentiation of harbour dues, rewarding cleaner vessels. Around 30 seaports are now using it to encourage greener shipping.

For the World Ports Climate Initiative we have developed two websites, one on Onshore Power Supply or ocean-going vessels. And one LNG fuelled vessels.

Our clients

For over a decade we have been carrying out research and consultancy on the environmental impact of maritime shipping. Our clients include the IMO, the European Commission, UNEP, the Dutch ministry of Infrastructure & Environment and allied ministries in other EU member states, Transport & Environment (T&E), the Netherlands Society for Nature and Environment, the UNFCCC secretariat, the Dutch Directorate-General for Public Works & Water Management (IDVV programme), Rotterdam Port Authority, the Netherlands Petroleum Industry Association (VNPI) and Zuid-Holland provincial executive.

Your contact

For more information, please contact Jasper Faber