Compagnie Maritime Belge (CMB) shipping group’s Hydroville hydrogen (H2)-powered passenger ferry has received a second Port of Antwerp sustainability award.

With this award, the Port of Antwerp, the Left Bank Development Corporation and Alfaport Voka (Chamber of Commerce) encourage companies in the port to develop sustainable projects.

Along with the points awarded by the jury, the final winner was chosen on the basis of online voting by members of the general public. The Antwerp-based shipping group was given the award for its Hydroville shuttle, the first certified passenger shuttle that uses H2 to power a diesel engine. It will be used to provide sustainable commuter transport within the Antwerp port area. This promising initiative puts CMB in a pioneering position internationally. According to the jury, H2 offers the advantages needed to become the main energy source of the future.

The CMB hydrogen shuttle

The CMB hydrogen shuttle

Source: Hydroville

Alexander Saverys, CEO of Compagnie Maritime Belge, explains, “We are particularly happy and proud to win the Port of Antwerp Sustainability Award. With investments in new, more sustainable technologies we aim to get our company and the Antwerp maritime cluster in general ready for an exciting future. Starting from Antwerp, CMB aims to make its mark in international shipping with innovative vessel designs and the development of low-carbon energy sources.”

As the winner of the Port of Antwerp Sustainability Award, CMB also gains a place in the Walk of Sustainability at the foot of Port House, the headquarters of Antwerp Port Authority.

“Together with the other members of the port community we are working towards a sustainable port,” says Port Authority CEO Jacques Vandermeiren. 

He continued, “It is thanks to these joint efforts that we are making tangible progress in the energy transition. The entries for this award make it abundantly clear: there is a wealth of inspiring sustainability initiatives in our port. I am particularly proud of being able to present this award to CMB, as an excellent example of how a commercially driven project can offer a significant gain in sustainability.”

Award for sustainable initiatives

The Port of Antwerp is keen to encourage all companies operating in the port to make positive contributions in the transition towards a more sustainable port. Sixteen companies and organisations responded to the invitation for entries in the 2018 competition. The specialist jury headed by port alderman Marc Van Peel selected a shortlist of three entrants which in addition to CMB included Ashland Specialities Belgium and BASF Antwerp. Ashland Specialities was chosen for the way in which it recycles rainwater, and BASF for its new aniline plant with energy recovery.