Environmental impact

Antwerp’s port community pays attention to the various forms of environmental impact that the port’s activities may have. Together we actively work to limit nuisance and pollution and help sustain large nature areas. What’s more, companies can also contribute to nature development in the port.

Valuable nature in the port

The port has hundreds of hectares of important and unique nature sites, which make up 5% of the port’s total area. Ninety protected animal and plant species have a safe habitat in the port area, living in an ecological infrastructure network. We are also committed to making optimum use of natural processes and controlling various habitats as part of the management of the Scheldt estuary.  We partner with Natuurpunt to preserve, strengthen and further develop nature areas. Do you want to explore some surprising nature areas in the port? Learn more about this here.

Air quality

Following the implementation of joint action plans from 2008 onwards, air quality in the port has strongly improved. Sulphur and nitrogen dioxide emissions have dropped. Find out more here. Awareness campaigns such as the Propere Lucht (Clean Air) greening campaign demonstrate our commitment to better air quality for everyone in and around the port. The Port Authority and other companies continue to replace obsolete equipment with low-emission alternatives.

Noise nuisance

The noise nuisance map determines how many inhabitants are exposed to a specific type of nuisance. Where possible, we aim to establish loud port activities as far as possible from residential neighbourhoods, when granting new concessions. Every company must also adhere to legal directives about noise nuisance for the communities around the port. Find out more here.

Soil quality

Companies, concession holders and the Port Authority take pre-emptive measures against soil contamination. They also survey soil quality in sites across the port and remediate where appropriate.

Water quality

Sixty-four fish species swim in the Scheldt, and the spawning grounds in the docks are also flourishing.  Every month we test the water in all the docks behind the locks. You can find more detailed information here.


Companies have a legal duty to enforce smart waste management and processing. The Port Authority charges a reduced fee for environment-friendly ships and strives for ‘zero pellet loss’. When waste is produced, we encourage companies to consider re-use, recycling and energy recovery during waste processing.


We stimulate innovation and investments in sustainable - solar and wind - energy generation. This is a very important priority in the port of Antwerp, along with energy saving measures. We undertake to facilitate sustainable energy and work to develop a future-oriented energy policy.

Do you have questions or complaints about this? Contact us.

Sustainable Development Goals Port of Antwerp