The Rotterdam-based inland shipping cooperative NPRC is the first logistics service provider in the inland shipping sector to be appointed as ‘incentive provider’ by the Green Award Foundation. In practice, NPRC can be expected to pay a share of the audit costs associated with certification for its members, as well as actively thinking along about the requirements set for the Green Award certification of inland shipping companies. According to the Member of the Provincial Executive of South Holland Rik Janssen, this is a ground-breaking collaboration.


From left to right: Jan Fransen (Green Award), Stefan Meeusen (NPRC), Rik Janssen (Prov Zuid Holland), Hester Duursema (Green Award) 

The unique partnership was announced during the meeting ‘Goederenvervoer over Water in een Stroomversnelling’ (‘Freight Transport by Water picks up Pace’) organised by the Province of South Holland on Wednesday, 20 June. As an official confirmation of the new collaboration, Green Award director Jan Fransen presented a Green Award plaque to NPRC director Stefan Meeusen.

During the meeting, the Member of the Provincial Executive Rik Janssen (whose portfolio includes Environmental Affairs, Water and Water Transport) praised the initiative, calling it ‘ground-breaking’. Janssen urged all parties in the logistics chain – from shippers to entrepreneurs – to also enter into new collaborations in the interest of a smart, clean and more inland shipping sector.

Companies in the inland shipping sector have been welcome to apply for a Green Award for a number of years now. Depending on the scope of their sustainability measures, the Foundation can issue a Bronze, Silver or Gold certificate, as well as a Platinum label for zero-emission ship operations. As the first ‘incentive provider’ with a logistic background for the sector, NPRC will be reimbursing its members for 35% of the costs involved in obtaining the Green Award certificate.

NPRC director Stefan Meeusen: “Over the next few years, the entire sector will face stricter emission requirements. We are happy that the Green Award offers the members of our cooperative an opportunity to think along about the right requirements for the different certificates. In the period ahead, our members will be required to make huge investments in ‘greener’ shipping. Clarity regarding the correct requirements and regulations will give them more certainty in this area.”

Jan Fransen, the director of the Green Award Foundation, is also very pleased with the new partnership. “Of course we welcome every new incentive for ships to apply for Green Award certification. What makes this partnership special is that NPRC will be serving as an incentive provider in an entirely new segment for the Green Award scheme. I expect that this step will add momentum to a major strategic development in the on-going ‘greening’ of the inland shipping sector. We hope that in the near future, other parties such as shippers will also be applying for the role of incentive provider.”

About NPRC:
Every year the members of the inland shipping cooperative NPRC transport over 13 million tonnes of dry bulk along Europe’s waterways, making NPRC the largest cooperative of its kind in Europe. The cooperative works for a large number of shippers in a variety of sectors and has local offices in Rotterdam, Antwerp, Paris, Mannheim and Duisburg. NPRC has placed sustainability, digitalisation and supply chain efficiency high on its agenda.