The Polytechnic University of Catalonia in Spain has developed a tool for the identification and implementation of environmental indicators in ports.
The computer-based tool has been designed for port environmental managers as part of the E.U. PORTOPIA project. PORTOPIA aims to create an integrated knowledge base and management system of port performance to improve the sustainability and competitiveness of European ports.
The new system can be accessed freely via www.eports.cat/teip. After answering a set of questions, users obtain a final list of environmental performance indicators to be used in their port. They also receive recommendations and a set of guidelines for the implementation of the indicators.
This takes about 20 minutes, and all the data provided in the tool is treated in strict confidence. The process is divided in five steps:
Step 1: Port contact details
Step 2: Significant Environmental Aspects
Users are required to enter the significant environmental aspects of their port. A checklist of possible environmental aspects is provided, and the user has to select the ones that are considered significant.
Step 3: Questions on Significant Environmental Aspects
Questions on the aspects selected on the previous step are requested, in order to identify the most suitable indicators.
Step 4: Questions on environmental management and port development
Questions regarding the environmental management and development of the port are requested, in order to find out the most adequate indicators concerning management.
Step 5: Environmental Performance Indicators
The final list of environmental performance indicators recommended for monitoring in the port is provided in this last step. In addition, specific guidelines for the implementation of each indicator and particular recommendations for ensuring an effective environmental management are sent by email.