It’s no secret that nations across the world are trying to develop infrastructure in response to the demands of growing populations while also aiming to meet global climate change objectives. Could our historic waterways hold the key to unlocking a solution that allows nations to strike this delicate balance?
Clearly, the reliability and efficiency of the supply chain is essential towards maintaining the standards of living and levels of accessibility that we are becoming accustomed to. Meeting the expectations of the ever-demanding global consumer is a challenge exacerbated by population growth, congestion, limited investments, environmental pressures and aging equipment.
Historically, investment in maritime solutions has focused on port infrastructure spending, creating larger, higher capacity and more efficient terminals. In doing so, cargo terminals have moved further away from populated city centres, driven by land availability, rising costs, ease of access and environmental issues. However, with this shift comes the demand for reliable connections to the hinterland, which are usually road or rail-based. Unfortunately, road and rail transportation are also becoming more congested and subsequently contributing to deteriorating air quality and rising carbon emissions – leaving us with the responsibility to look for greener, cleaner and healthier alternatives.