AMSTERDAM: Port of Amsterdam will be joining the Green Award programme for inland barges on 1 January 2015.
The Green Award for Inland Navigation – which identifies, recognises and promotes cleaner vessels – is based on the environmental quality label of the same name for sea shipping. Vessels that score high on safety and quality sail under the Green Award flag worldwide. A total of 541 inland barges have been certified to date. A total of 15 ports in the Netherlands and Belgium currently provide a discount on Inland Harbour Dues, and five banks and one insurance company contribute to the Green Award certification costs of their clients.
The basic aim of this certificate is to mak it the first port to reward vessels based on their Green Award level. The level a vessel has attained – Bronze, Silver or Gold – will determine the discount on the Inland Harbour Dues its operator pays for Amsterdam harbour waters.
Port of Amsterdam’s membership in the Green Award programme is consistent with its sustained efforts to reduce its own impact on the environment and promote clean air, cleaner water and clean soil. The Port has been an incentive provider for sea-faring vessels carrying the Green Award certificate for many years now, and starting in 2015 the Port will also be giving discounts to Green Award-certified barges.
The new Green Award requirements for inland navigation vessels came into force in June 2014 and introduced a number of new elements. The main difference with its predecessor is that there are different levels within the programme, with vessels being rewarded based on their performance. Vessels may be classified as Bronze, Silver or Gold depending on the number of points they have earned. Port of Amsterdam will be granting generous discounts to these vessels: 5% for ‘Bronze’ vessels, 10% for ‘Silver’ vessels and 15% for ‘Gold’ vessels. In other words, the amount of the discount received by the vessel or shipping company is directly proportional to the vessel’s environmental friendliness and safety.
The Green Award programme was created to promote safer and cleaner inland navigation and advocates an integrated approach for European inland waterways. Every port, shipping manager and waterway managing company can make the difference by joining Green Award.