Jan De Nul commits to emission reductions with focus on drop-in biofuels

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Jan De Nul Group has announced its commitment to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 15% per year during maintenance dredging works at the Nieuwpoort marina in Belgium.

Under a collaboration with the Flemish government, the company also intends to include a minimum requirement of 15% CO2 reduction in 80% of maintenance dredging contracts in Flanders by 2020.

With this commitment, the dredging company has become the first to aspire to such a high reduction target in a commercial application for a project.

In order to achieve the ambitious CO2 reductions, Jan De Nul will focus on drop-in biofuel, made from vegetable oils or waste flows.

By working with Jan De Nul on this drop-in biofuel approach, the Dutch Agency for Maritime and Coastal Services (MDK), part of the Department of Mobility and Public Works, has showcased its ambition to achieve the emission reduction targets.

“As a maritime authority within the Flemish government, we want to focus on reducing our environmental footprint in every possible way,” said Nathalie Balcaen, CEO at MDK. “We therefore pay particular attention to green criteria when we define specifications for the market. This already leads to concrete CO₂ reduction today, particularly by paying attention to ecological performance during dredging works and to the contractors with whom we cooperate.

“The MDK pays attention not only to climate requirements when drawing up procurement contracts. We assume our responsibility in the way we work as well. We are greening our own vessels as well in order to reduce our CO₂ emissions. For instance, we are in the process of building an electric boat.”

The project is also in line with Jan De Nul’s strategy to take a leading role in a sector-wide initiative to reduce CO2 emissions.

“We want to make the utmost effort and, in doing so, inspire other companies in our sector to focus on energy or CO₂ reduction measures,” said Bart Praet, head of dredging works in the company’s Benelux department. “We are therefore delighted to be engaged in dialogue with the Flemish government and the non-profit organisation Vlaamse Waterbouwers VZW, and are working closely together with Zero Emission Solutions and the advanced sustainable fuel sector.”

“Our project in Nieuwpoort is a concrete example of how we wish to launch a dialogue on reduction requirements,” Praet continued. “We want to encourage our sector to quickly and forcefully come up with energy and CO₂ reduction measures through innovation.”