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The Growth of the Freeport of Riga Will Be Based on Implementation of Socially Responsible Policies, Sustainable Use of Resources and Care for the Environment

Work by the Freeport of Riga Authority on the port development programme for the upcoming decade has reached its final stage. The “Freeport of Riga Development Programme for 2019-2028” is a comprehensive document which will outline trends for the development of the Port of Riga in the next ten years — from the development of infrastructure objects and new logistics roads to sustainable environmental and social responsibility policies.

An important part is devoted to sustainable development and environment preservation in both the current development programme (for 2009-2018) and the future Freeport of Riga development programme. Looking back at the work done to preserve the environment within the framework of the previous development programme, it can be said that the set goals have been reached. The key tasks, i.e., environmental risk control and monitoring, as well as preservation of biological diversity, are ensured by the works carried out at the Port of Riga. Over the past decade, four dust monitoring stations and three volatile organic compound monitoring stations have been installed in the territory of the port. Two of them are operating in the new coal-handling territory on Krievu Island. 20 new territories were included in the groundwater monitoring network and seven aquatorium contamination detectors were installed. In 2011, the Accident Consequences Liquidation Division of the Port Police was created to control and supervise works related to pollution abatement operations.. In 2017, the project “Recovery of Historically Contaminated Places in the Territory of Sarkandaugava” implemented within the framework of the Latvian-Swiss cooperation programme, was completed. During the past decade, an anti-noise wall between the residential district of Kundziņsala and the railway was commissioned for operation, and the Kundziņsala residential district drainage project was developed.

The new “Freeport of Riga Development Programme for 2019-2028” states that the growth of the Freeport of Riga will be based on the implementation of socially responsible policies, sustainable use of resources and care for the environment. To implement this programme, the main goal is defined as the “reduction of environmental impact” of the port. In practice, this means continuing to maintain and improve the environmental quality management system and the environment monitoring programme. As to future plans, they are more far-reaching and investment-intense. The port plans to develop services to provide ships with a more environmentally friendly fuel, i.e., liquefied natural gas. Increasingly more ships across the world are using this fuel to make navigation more environmentally friendly. Likewise, it is planned to develop a strategy for the shore power supply of ships at the piers of the Port of Riga and to start its implementation.