Deep Demonstration on Zero-Net Emissions, Resilient Maritime Hubs

Ports are places where multiple systems collide (shipping, energy, waste, tourism and other transport). Ports can either be emissions hotspots or hubs able to drive enormous change. In a phased way, EIT Climate-KIC[1] will work with a small cohort of high-ambition port authorities in Valencia (Spain) and Piraeus (Greece) and Cyprus Ministry of Shipping to demonstrate how ambitious maritime hubs can be catalysts for reversing the fast-growing emissions from international shipping and trade.

The port of Piraeus is a particular hotspot of waste and shipping industry emissions. Being the second maritime cluster globally, makes it necessary to demonstrate that can become a catalyst of rapid changes and a resilient maritime hub. At the present the 51% of the port belongs to the Chinese company COSCO and the port is involved in 14 European projects, which show its commitment to become a green port and financially independent using alternative financing models. 

EIT Climate KIC Hub Greece directed by Prof. Phoebe Koundouri, (Athens University of Economics and Business) at the ATHENA Research Centre already has a deep understanding of the intended systems of Piraeus and many of the structural changes needed. ATHENA RC will act quickly, in coordination with the Port of Piraeus, Vera Alexandropoulou Law Office and the Blue Growth Initiative, in order to combine systems innovation approach with the multi-annual expertise on blue growth and maritime research and entrepreneurship in order to co-design Port innovations that will bring system changes. ATHENA is committed in rivers, ocean, water management, sustainable maritime and green shipping sector as well as the promotion of Blue Growth. 

Deep Demonstrations start with a demand-led approach, working with organisations willing to take on the responsibility of acting as ‘problem owners’ – in Greece Piraeus Port Authority - committed to zero-net emissions, resilient futures. Deep demonstrations progress in tightly designed, iterative phases - steps of rolling out systems innovation-as-a-service, aiming at the identification of the key actors to be involved, current status, vision, innovation needs, sustainable financial planning and ultimately at the alignment of all actors able to drive systems transition to a low-carbon emissions future. Deep Demonstration is a circular approach in innovation implementation with final goal the holistic change of the port to Sustainability.

This project is part of a much bigger UN SDSN Initiative, named the 4 Seas Initiative on Sustainable Blue Growth Transformation in the MED, BLACK, CASPIAN and ARAL Seas, led by UN SDSN Greece, SDSN Black Sea, which will work together with SDSN Mediterranean, Italy, Spain, France, Turkey and Russia under the auspices of the Global SDSN network. 

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[1] EIT Climate-KIC is a European knowledge and innovation community, working towards a prosperous, inclusive, climate-resilient society founded on a circular, zero-carbon economy. The EIT Climate-KIC is part of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) and the EIT Community. The EIT is a body of the European Union and a global innovation leader, delivering world class solutions to societal problems. In particular, we aim to catalyze the rapid innovation needed across sectors by convening the brightest minds to tackle challenges, empowering leaders through capacity building, and seed funding the most promising climate-positive businesses. 


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