Journey towards a greener port

Melissa De Silva The Straits Times AsiaOne 27 AUg 14;

SINGAPORE - With 17 years in the maritime industry under his belt, Mr Eugene Khoo, 49, holds two port- folios at the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA).

The larger Project Director (Next Generation Port) portfolio includes overseeing Phase 1 of the Tuas terminal project, which should be ready in about 10 years.

He works with various ministries, government agencies and tertiary institutions to help bring together the operating, engineering and information technology systems into an integrated whole for the development of this port.

Part of this task involves coordinating schedules and ensuring budgets and plans are on track.

His other portfolio, that of Senior Assistant Director (Tuas Port Development), involves overseeing the project management of the Tuas terminal Phases 1 and 2 reclamation projects.

It requires working with appointed international consultants to carry out the engineering design works for wharf construction, reclamation and dredging, among other tasks.

"Together with our consultants, my job also involves managing appointed international contractors," says Mr Khoo, who joined PSA Corp immediately after he obtained his civil engineering degree from the National University of Singapore in 1989.

"Right now at Tuas, we are doing preparation work for reclamation. Because it will be a port, we must dredge out seabed material, to deepen channels for ships," he says.

Due to concerns about environmental sustainability and a commitment to being a green port, a containment bund is being built.

"This is so that when materials are thrown out during the later stages of dredging and reclamation next year, the materials disposed from dredging and contained within the bund and the water outside the bund will not be polluted," he says.

After leaving PSA Corp to pursue full-time MBA studies in 2000, he returned to work on the development of Pasir Panjang terminal Phases 3 and 4 as a private engineering consultant with Surbana International Consultants in 2005. He joined the MPA in 2010.

He says: "Even after so many years, I am still excited about working in this industry.

"In land-scarce Singapore, our future port lands will have to be reclaimed over deeper waters of more than 20m deep.

"Building a deep-water port will dredge out seabed material, which will be recycled into reclamation filling as a sustainable development initiative for a greener port in Singapore."

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Sustainability a key driver in maritime industry
Melissa De Silva The Straits Times AsiaOne 27 Aug 14;

SINGAPORE - The Singapore maritime industry's aim to achieve sustainability has led to a number of key green initiatives in recent years.

The Maritime Singapore Green Initiative launched by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) in April 2011 was among them, aimed at reducing the environmental stresses of shipping-related activities.

Three programmes come under the umbrella of the Maritime Singapore Green Initiative: the Green Ship Programme, Green Port Programme and Green Technology Programme.

The Green Technology Programme is geared to boost the adoption of eco-friendly technologies among local maritime companies through co-funding, with $25 million being reserved for it.

A $100 million Maritime Innovation and Technology Fund has also been created by the MPA to support research and development of green maritime technology.

The MPA also works in partnership with the industry and other stakeholders to reduce the environmental impact of shipping and port activities by enacting measures to protect the marine environment.

Said an MPA spokesman: "A little-known fact is that Singapore's waters, despite being home to one of the busiest ports in the world, are also home to more than 250 species of hard corals, a quarter of the world's species.

"Two-thirds of the true mangrove plant species in Asia are also found in local waters. As a result, managing the environmental impact of shipping is a priority, even as the port is developed to meet economic targets."

Efforts include conducting studies to understand environmental impact, regulatory measures to ensure compliance with environmental regulations and incentives for environmentally responsible practices.

Another trajectory of promoting greener shipping is a joint industry project between MPA and DNV Technology Centre to assess the market for environmentally friendly liquefied natural gas as marine fuel as an alternative to marine fuel oil and marine gas oil.

Added the spokesman: "The mega terminal at Tuas, which will consolidate all existing container operations when it opens in about 10 years, is also being designed with sustainability in mind."

Some of the potential new technologies and processes for Tuas, including green port technologies, are already being tested under the Port Technology Research and Development Programme, launched by the MPA and PSA in April 2011.

One such unique idea was proposed by the winning team for the Next Generation Port Challenge in 2012, from the National University of Singapore, Shanghai Maritime University and Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industries.

Named the Singa (Sustainable Integrated Next Generation Advanced) port, it involves an innovative double-storey container port concept that promises higher performance and productivity through sustainable means.

To find out more about Maritime Singapore and the careers it offers, visit: www.maritime