Spain and France advance the road map to implement the railway motorways

Companies that choose to operate in the Mediterranean and Atlantic corridors have until July 16 to submit their bids.

The Spanish Minister of Development, Iñigo de la Serna, and the French Minister of Transport, Elisabeth Borne, have celebrated the publication of the two calls for proposals of common interest concerning the establishment of railway motorway services (ferroutage) along the Atlantic and Mediterranean axes.
These expressions of interest are a continuation of those made in 2017 and are aimed at the manufacturers of rolling stock, within the framework of the roadmap approved by the Spanish-French work group on railway motorways, to identify the technical solutions that will allow the transport of road semi-trailers by rail.

This publication confirms the commitment of Spain and France to discuss the development of the two corridors, to favor the modal shift, and to establish and reinforce these alternative services to the transport of goods by road.

These consultancies refer to the itineraries that connect the Northwest (Vitoria) and the East of Spain (Valencia-Murcia) with the North and the East of France (Calais / Lille / Metz) or even further: via Irún, Bordeaux and Paris on the Atlantic Corridor, on the one hand; and via Barcelona, Avignon and Lyon along the Mediterranean Corridor, on the other. Both axes can allow a service with Ile-de-France.

These calls for expressions of interest are aimed at stimulating the initiatives of industrial actors “by providing answers and operational solutions for these services”. Interested companies have until July 16, 2018 to submit their offers.

The report prepared by the two States, which is incorporated into the current consultations, specifies the characteristics and functionalities of the materials proposed by the five designers and manufacturers who responded to the consultation. “The development of truck transport services by rail is an essential element for improving the sustainability of freight transport, according to a joint publication of both ministries, which is one of the priorities of the two States brought forth by the significant volume of traffic of trucks along the two corridors, on the borders of Perthus and Biriatou. “

On the other hand, the two countries welcome the support of their initiative on behalf of the European Union, especially along the Atlantic axis, with the financial support of the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF). Finally, the ministers agree that “this joint positioning on the railway motorways is in full consonance with the desire to intensify the Franco-Spanish cooperation in the field of transport of freight, promoting the use of environmentally friendly solutions. It is also an illustration of the governments’ conviction that rail freight, especially along these main corridors, is a solution for the future.”

Source: El Vigia

The Escola’s first Summer School on Port Operations to take place in Barcelona

Between the 9th and the 13th of July 2018 the Escola Europea will run the first ever edition of the Summer School focusing on Port Operations. This unique and novel programme will bring the course participants close to the activities carried out in the Port of Barcelona, by offering a thorough analysis of the operations involved and including a practical study of companies, their employees and their facilities.

Alongside practical workshops to different sites across the Catalan enclave, including visits to the Pilot Control Tower, the Border Inspection Post, Tugs facilities, etc, the participants will discover the theories behind the port community and port operations from the perspectives of terminals, cargo and agents; learn about services offered to visiting vessels; discover port security protocols; understand risk management of  dangerous goods and emergencies; find out about infrastructure and the functionalities of the Border Inspection Post; consider the environmental aspects of management of the port area and start to consider qualities of a future port.

The Summer School will be open for anyone to attend, but it will especially benefit students of port management, nautical and maritime transport, transport management and logistics; early or mid-career ship and port agents wishing to develop their knowledge; shipping company personnel wishing to understand the work of the agent; and port terminal personnel wishing to understand how port operations and services work.

The teaching staff will comprise experts in intermodal maritime logistics active within the local community, professionals from the Port of Barcelona, and representatives from the Escola Europea – Intermodal Transport. It will be a week not to be missed!

For more information you can consult the course page: https://www.escolaeuropea.eu/courses/port-operations/

Report: LNG Comparable to Other Fossil Fuels

There is no widely available fuel, including LNG, to manage climate change and local pollutants in tandem, according to a recent study by researchers at The University of Manchester.

The researchers carried out a life cycle assessment of current and future fuels used by the shipping companies to quantify their environmental impacts. The alternative fuels assessed in the study were LNG, methanol, liquid hydrogen, biodiesel, straight vegetable oil and bio-LNG. They measured the impacts of local pollutants (sulfur oxides, nitrogen oxides and particulate matter) and greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide).

Fuels can incur the release of emissions at various stages of their life-cycle, for example during refining or transportation, or during the cultivation of the fuel if it is bio-derived. The latter may have impacts associated with cultivation, land-use change and agricultural inputs such as fertilizers. Although the upstream emissions are not attributed to the shipping sector, it is essential to ensure wider implications of fuel switches are accounted for, say the researchers. Failure to take upstream emissions into account in any sectoral assessment risks locking in carbon intensive solutions.

Dr Paul Gilbert, Senior Lecturer in Climate Change Mitigation, said: “In particular, LNG is a promising option for meeting existing regulation, but it is not a low greenhouse gas emissions fuel.

“To understand the full extent of the environmental implications it is important to consider the emissions released over the full life-cycle and not just during fuel combustion. Otherwise, there is a risk of misleading the industry and policy on the true emission penalties of any alternative fuels.”

The two conventional fossil fuels and LNG produce comparable baseline greenhouse gas emissions. When taking into account non-CO2 emissions, any reductions of greenhouse gas emissions in terms of CO2e are negligible for LNG, states the study. The main life-cycle hot-spots include liquefaction efficiency; extent of venting and flaring; and methane slip – the unintended release of methane during ship operation.

Even under idealized conditions, reductions of CO2 emissions are strictly limited. Bio-LNG produced from agricultural waste is an exception. The results show that it has the potential to cut CO2 emissions significantly. However, feedstock is limited.

The figure (sourced from the Journal of Cleaner Production) shows lifecycle emissions in terms of carbon dioxide equivalents, distinguishing between upstream and operational emissions.

The study says effort needs to be directed at overcoming barriers to exploiting the identified low carbon potential of fuels or finding alternatives. Gilbert said it is important to ensure that any short-term measure doesn’t diminish the potential roll-out of low carbon fuels, in particular when taking into account the long life times of ships and fuel supply infrastructure.

Source: Maritime Executive 

Port-railway connections remain key for the development of rail transport

The third month of the year saw the beginning of new railway connections in Spanish ports and the start-up of different projects linked to intermodality, while the works of the Mediterranean Corridor continue to advance.

The month of March has brought very good news for Renfe, which in 2017 achieved net profits for the first time without taking extraordinary income into account (specifically, 70 million euros). In addition, after receiving the PQQ pre-qualification passport, it can now participate in the railway competitions in the United Kingdom, which currently has the most competitive and liberalized rail market in Europe.

Its merchandise division has managed to balance its EBITDA to a negative figure of 0.9 million euros, 7.71 million more than in 2016. However, its traffic has shown a decrease of 5% in the first months of 2018, especially due to the fall in metric width movements.

On the other hand, Spanish ports continue to maintain their commitment to rail connections. In the third month of the year the first direct service for the transport of vehicles from Germany was started, operated by DB Cargo, sharing the leading role with the Medway line between the ports of Seville (Spain) and Sines (Portugal), with a capacity of of more than 100 TEUs per trip.

In addition, the Port Authority of Cartagena has given the green light at the beginning of the record for the improvement of the Escombreras railway terminal, and the fourth weekly intermodal rail service between the Intermodal Terminal of Navarra, located in Noáin, and the BEST terminal in the Port of Barcelona has been launched.

Intermodal terminals and the Mediterranean Corridor

In this context, it is necessary to point out that the Navarrese administration plans to promote the intermodal nodes of Noáin-Imárcoain and Tudela-Castejón within the framework of its logistics strategy 2018-2028, while Spanish Ministry of Development (Fomento) and the Junta de Extremadura will work on the development of three new intermodal freight terminals in Cáceres and Badajoz.

Likewise, work has begun on installing the first section of the 750-meter lane of the three branches that the Miranda Container Terminal will have in Burgos, at the initiative of JSV Logistic. Cimalsa is immersed in a project to promote intermodality in the cross-border transport of goods between France and Catalonia.

Regarding the connections with France, another issue that has continued to be debated in March is the reopening of Canfranc, which would boost the traffic of the Maritime Terminal of Zaragoza, with a total movement of 180,000 containers per year.

In March, the development of the Mediterranean Corridor has also advanced, since Adif has been awarded the contract for the project to connect in the standard width the multimodal platform of La Llagosta, in Barcelona, with this infrastructure.

Nevertheless, in the south of Spain a demand to boost this section of the corridor, with the same benefits for the coastal branch as for the interior, meaning a double platform across its entirety from the French border all the way to Andalusia.

Source: Cadena de Suministro

The Port of Barcelona promotes the World Ports Sustainability Program through three projects

The purpose of the WPSP is to promote the sustainability of the port logistics chain.

The Port of Barcelona is one of the promoters of the World Ports Sustainability Program (WPSP), a project whose objective is to promote sustainability in ports and in all logistics chains. The WPSP wants to gather, coordinate and promote the different sustainability initiatives that are being developed in ports around the world, helping them respond to the needs of the communities they serve and, at the same time, tackle the great global challenges, such as climate change, mobility, digitalization, migration and social integration.

The WPSP, which was presented at the conference of the same title held last week in the port of Antwerp, inaugurated by Queen Mathilde of Belgium – one of the 17 defenders of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals – is a initiative of the International Association of Ports and Harbors (IAPH), which presides over the port of Barcelona, and is a continuation of the World Ports Climate Declaration, signed by 55 of the world’s major ports ten years ago. The conference was attended by the Secretary General of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), Kitack Lim, who has expressed the support of the world’s leading maritime organization to the WPSP.

In addition to the IAPH, the main international port and transport organizations have been added to the initiative, including the European Ports Association (ESPO), the Association of Port Authorities of America (AAPA), and the International Association of Cities and Ports (AIVP).

At the launch conference of the WPSP, the deputy general director of Strategy and Commerce of the port of Barcelona and president of IAPH, Santiago Garcia-Milà, has highlighted the ability of “the global port community to contribute to the objectives of the United Nations in important aspects such as energy and education “, and has defended that” the cooperation between the different actors of the international maritime business gives enormous potential to this initiative “.

The Catalan port participates in the WPSP with three of its own projects. The first, the Study of the Impact of Cruise Activity in Barcelona. The second, the Air Quality Improvement Plan of the Port of Barcelona, which aims to reduce polluting emissions through 25 actions developed in 53 activities. Many of these are already being developed and are based, to a large extent, on the promotion of liquefied natural gas (LNG) as an alternative fuel for ships, terminal machinery and trucks. Finally, Links Port, the web tool to build and compare online transport chains to import or export a container between any port in the world and Europe through Barcelona, which includes a model for calculating emissions.

Source: El Vigia

Escola Europea promotes Formati al Porto in Italy

On the 26th of March 2018 the director of the Escola Europea – Intermodal Transport, Eduard Rodés travelled to the Lazio region of Italy to meet Mr Marco Ciarlantini, the head of the director’s secretariat of the regional directorate for training, research and innovation (Scuola Università, Diritto allo Studio – Regione Lazio). The meeting was also attended by Giovanni Marinucci (ADSP Mar Tirreno Centro Settentrionale) and Andrea Campagna, consultant at the Research Centre for Transport and Logistics – CTL  and Università degli Studi di Roma ‘La Sapienza’. During the talks possibilities of future collaborations as well as of governmental co-financing were discussed.

The Formati Al Porto project will have a triennial structure and will be aimed at university students (Transport and Territory Engineering, Circular Economy, Tourism) as well as higher technical institutes (area 2: Sustainable Mobility) students. For more details about the Italian education system, please visit https://www.ceebd.co.uk/study-in-italy/).

The main aim of the initiative is to have the students get in touch with the port community and activities and learn directly from the sources the characteristics of the professions linked to the port businesses. They will have a first-hand experience of infrastructures, facilities and operations. Moreover, the project will improve the alignment between the qualifications requested by the companies and the competences offered by the education system.

The Escola Europea has already acquired some expertise with this kind of programmes. The Forma’t Al port project was launched in 2014 in Barcelona. The initiative was a success and after the first triennium the agreements with sponsors and partners were renewed in early 2018 for three more years with more educating centres willing to participate.

The Formati Al Porto pilot course is scheduled for the end of 2018.

Energy efficiency in shipping – why it matters!

All industries are looking to becoming cleaner, greener and more energy efficient – and shipping is no exception. Improved energy efficiency means less fuel is used, and that means less harmful emissions.

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) – the United Nations specialized agency with responsibility for safe, secure and environment-friendly shipping – is leading a European Union funded project designed to help shipping move into a new era of low-carbon operation.

IMO has launched a video outlining how the Global MTCC Network (GMN) initiative is uniting technology centres – Maritime Technology Cooperation Centres (MTCCs) – in targeted regions into a global network. Together, they are promoting technologies and operations to improve energy efficiency in the maritime sector.

“This project is one of the building blocks that will help shipping becoming greener,” says Magda Kopczynska, Director, DG MOVE, European Commission.

Five MTCCs have been established in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Latin America and the Pacific. Acting as centres of excellence for their regions, the MTCCs will work with partners to develop technical cooperation, capacity building and technology transfer – sharing the results and their experiences throughout the network to ensure a common approach to a global issue.

Innovative programmes and projects are being developed and carried out by the MTCCs – all designed to promote energy-efficient technologies and operations.

Developing countries and, in particular, Least Developed Countries and Small Island Developing States, will be the main beneficiaries of this ambitious initiative.

For regions particularly vulnerable to the impact of climate change, it’s a chance to get involved in promoting technologies and operations to improve energy efficiency in the maritime sector.

“When we saw this project, we saw it as an opportunity to build partnership throughout the region to mitigate, at least in the maritime sector, the impacts of climate change,” says Vivian Rambarath-Parasram, Head of MTCC-Caribbean.

Estimates say ships’ energy consumption and CO2 emissions could be reduced by up to 75% by applying operational measures and implementing existing technologies. The GMN is on the cutting edge of climate-change mitigation – and, at the same time, opening up a world of opportunities for those who participate in it.

“We’re looking forward to building capacity for not just Kenya but for the African region in general – to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, to improve air quality in our port cities,” says Nancy W. Karigithu, Principal Secretary Maritime and Shipping Affairs, Kenya.

By promoting technologies and operations to improve energy efficiency in the maritime sector and helping navigate shipping into a low-carbon future, the GMN project is steering a course for a cleaner, greener future.

The GMN project is funded by the European Union and implemented by the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

MTCCs:

  • MTCC-Africa, hosted by Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Mombasa, Kenya
  • MTCC-Asia, hosted by Shanghai Maritime University, China
  • MTCC-Caribbean, hosted by University of Trinidad and Tobago, Trinidad and Tobago
  • MTCC-Latin America, hosted by International Maritime University of Panama, Panama
  • MTCC-Pacific, hosted by Pacific Community, Suva, Fiji

Source: Hellenic Shipping News

The Escola Europea puts the TransLogMED Project into full throttle

This spring has brought a lot of activity for the Escola, both nationally and internationally. Apart from planning and carrying out the traditional courses in intermodal transport, the Escola Europea – Intermodal Transport has multiplied its efforts to promote the ambitious project TransLogMED throughout the Mediterranean.

This week during the SITL conference in Paris (France), the Escola has shared a stand with the Port of Barcelona, Grimaldi Lines and ALIS, and was able to present the courses created specifically to train representatives from the transport sector of North Africa (Tunis, Morocco and Argelia) in intermodal logistics to the French public.

Simultaneously, between the 21st and the 22nd of March, the VII Spanish-Moroccan meeting was held in Tangier, organized by the Spanish Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Tangier, with the aim of bringing together Spanish and Moroccan companies from the Maritime, Transport and Logistics sectors to promote collaboration with Moroccan official institutions and organizations. A delegation from the Escola, formed by its director Eduard Rodés, Xavier Lluch, Responsible for the TransLogMED project and Idriss Aarabi, Exploitation Director of Tanger Med, presented the project to attendees of the meeting. In addition there was also a large selection of institutional presentations, among which was one given by Ana Arévalo, the Commercial Manager of the Port of Barcelona, who stressed the fundamental role of training in boosting the maritime economy of North African countries.

In May the Escola’s team will travel to the city of Marrakech, home of the Logismed International Logistics Fair (9-11 May), where it will have its own stand dedicated to the TransLogMED project, labelled by the UfM (Union for the Mediterranean).

From a more operational point of view, it is interesting to note the next MOST TUNISIA course organized jointly with the IMFMM (Institut Méditerranéen de Formation aux Métiers Maritimes), with the help of the Escola’s usual collaborators (Port of Barcelona, Ports of Genoa, Ports of Rome, Grandi Navi Veloci (GNV) and Grimaldi Lines) and, on the Tunisian side, the Office of the Merchant Navy (l’Office de la Marina Marchande) , Cotunav, Stam and Transglory. The training will be carried out on board of two vessels, one from GNV and the other from Cotunav, which cover the route between La Goulette and Genoa. Participants will gather in the IMFMM headquarters in Tunisia to begin their theoretical training in intermodal transport and logistics and then embark in the port of La Goulette to continue the training on board of the vessel, and later on in the city of Genoa.

The teaching staff will comprise experts in intermodal maritime logistics active within the local and international maritime industry, as well as representatives of the institutional sector.

For more information you can consult the project page https://www.escolaeuropea.eu/projects/translogmed//.

Predictive Applications Take Supply Chains into the Future

Anything can happen in the supply chain–trucks break down, ships get rerouted, goods are stolen, parts are faulty, ports close, dockworkers go on strike, and supplier production lines go down. This uncertainty causes companies to buffer inventories beyond what is necessary to service forecasted demand just in case something goes wrong.

But this is an expensive process that ties up working capital and often leaves companies with unused excess inventory. In fact, studies have shown the annual additional cost of holding excess inventory can be 25-32 percent, according to The Retail Owners Institute.

Many companies handle supply chain anomalies with reactive planning systems. They quickly try to remediate problems with optimization algorithms once anomalies occur. But this is tantamount to looking in the rear-view mirror. Plus, lead times to ship products, procure new goods, or produce new goods are often lengthy, making it impossible to react to meet customer demand when supply suddenly changes. One new approach to dealing with supply chain uncertainty is to use machine learning to predict what might go wrong and use that as the basis for the supply chain planning processes. This approach uses scenarios constructed from predictive models.

Machine learning tools build these models from available historical data that can be applied to future scenarios. For example, let’s assume a company has 1,000 ASNs (advance shipment notices) in flight at any given moment. While each of those ASNs has a scheduled delivery date, if a planner, supply manager, or someone in receiving is asked where they all are, they will tell a story about a scheduled ASN that is expected to be late. How do they know? It’s because they have access to data that gives them this predictive signal and because they have learned how to pattern match that data to predict supply chain events.

INTRODUCING ONLINE PREDICTIVE PROCESSING

A new data platform called online predictive processing (OLPP) – essentially predictive applications – can automate this insight. It can create expected “scenarios” directly from machine learning models that predict which ASNs are likely to be late and estimate how late they will be. With OLPP, machine learning models can provide every ASN an “expected” date in addition to its scheduled date, creating a new “scenario” comprised of all live ASNs and their expected deliveries.

THE POTENTIAL OF WHAT-IF SCENARIO PLANNING

Scenarios are powerful. 3PLs can use them to warn receiving companies of anticipated changes, giving them an opportunity to plan around problems. 4PLs and manufacturers can do even more. They can propagate scenarios down their supply chains, surfacing production orders and even sales orders that are impacted by the anticipated events. This tool can plan around shortages, satisfy customers, and produce predictable revenues.

OLPP is a new technology that enables both the analytical processing required for the learning of predictions, as well as so-called “transactional” processing, to model inventory availability and power what-if scenario planning.

To learn models, OLPP platforms process volumes of historical ASN data such as carrier, source, destination, mode, port, size, weight, shipper and receiver, as well as exogenous data such as fleet data, weather data, and even news summaries. OLPP uses this past experience to train models that, when deployed and applied to live ASNs, provide a prediction of how late an ASN will be based on all of the experiential data it has seen.

Then, the OLPP platform can set the expected delivery dates according to these predictions and project inventory levels down the supply chain. The application can surface any expected shortages or overages based on these expectations and even let planners move other orders on the schedule in order to resolve problems.

The power of this approach to supply chain management is that instead of buffering excess inventory unnecessarily, trying to forecast supply chain glitches, or just reacting to them when they happen, companies can use data to train models to predict when they are “likely” to happen and use planning tools to proactively plan around these expected events, saving millions of dollars in inventory, vastly improving supply chain efficiency, and ultimately satisfying customers downstream.

Source: Inbound Logistics

EU Council reaffirms rail potential of TEN-T corridors

Ministers from the Transport, Telecommunications and Energy Council of the EU met in Brussels to consider how policy can continue to help implement sustainable transport systems where energy consumption is low, but mobility for users is improved through better transport times and routes.

Read the full article on http://www.onthemosway.eu/eu-council-reaffirms-rail-potential-of-ten-t-corridors/