Minister Harbers hands out 1,000th inland shipping Green Award certificate


At the start of Green Award for Inland Navigation in 2011, it was a dot on the horizon. Now, 11 years later, it is reality: 1,000 inland vessels have been awarded a Green Award certificate.

To underline the importance this milestone, Minister Mark Harbers of Infrastructure and Water Management was prepared to officially present the 1,000th certificate. Jan Huijbers, general manager of hydraulic engineering company Van den Herik Sliedrecht proudly accepted the certificate for his ms. Prince 1′ proudly received the certificate.

Minister Mark Harbers (left) hands out the certificaat to Jan Huijbers (right) of Van den Herik Sliedrecht

Minister Harbers: “I am impressed by what Green Award has achieved in stimulating and rewarding greening in shipping. Inland shipping is a relatively clean mode of transport, but it must take steps to achieve the climate targets. Investing in greening is not only necessary but also good for the competitiveness of the shipping industry. The 1,000th certificate shows that the sector is working on this”.

Jan Huijbers: “We are pleased with this recognition. In hydraulic engineering we also see that greening is necessary and can provide a competitive advantage. We have therefore decided to invest in making our multifunctional dredger ‘Prins 1’ more sustainable. Although the vessel dates from 1969, it performs like a new-build thanks to smart applications. We have, for example, installed Stage V engines with soot filters and catalytic converters to minimise harmful emissions.

Van den Herik now has two vessels with a Green Award certificate. Prince 6′ is certified at the ‘silver’ level and ‘Prince 1’ at the ‘gold’ level. Jan Huijbers: “Our ships were already literally green, now they are figuratively green too!”

Jan Fransen (Green Award), Pieter Struijs (former Green Award Chairman), Minister Mark Harbers, and Jan Huijbers (Van den Herik Sliedrecht)

Jan Fransen, Executive Director of Green Award is proud of the milestone and the ship. “The ‘Prins 1’ proves that older ships can also become more sustainable. I like that, because it makes optimal use of the ship’s long life, which is also sustainable.” Jan indicates that Green Award is full of energy for the further development of the organisation. “We are further developing the Programme of Requirements. There is an increasing demand for Green Award certification for various types of ships, which means that we are going to focus on customisation. In doing so, we ensure the relationship with 12 of the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals. Together with entrepreneurs in the shipping industry and incentive providers, we will continue to work towards a future-proof society.”

ms. Prins 1