Gdynia Port Authority and Riga Freeport have signed an Memorandum of Intent that will pave the way to enable greater co-operation between them. One of the results should see the Port of Riga handling at least five million tonnes of coal by the end of the year.
The two ports hope to take advantage of the unstable situation in the global energy market and disruptions in freight supply chains by leveraging spare capacity to be found at the Latvian and Polish ports.
In particular, Riga wants to better use the state-of-the-art multi-purpose Krievu Island terminal, which became operational at the end of 2018. This facility has equipment to handle and crush coal, as well as transport and store it. It has the most up-to-date infrastructure in the Baltic region as well as being very environ mentally friendly.
Coal handling, for example, is effectively a sealed activity, with an automated wagon dumper system. Furthermore, a closed conveyor belt network transports coal to and from docked vessels. In order to reduce dust escaping into the air from open coal storage areas, the coal is regularly misted; in winter, snow cannons are also used for the same purpose. There is also a 23-metre-high dust fence to prevent the spread of coal dust into the immediate environment.
The port authority has also placed an air quality monitoring station on Krievu Island.