Award-winning environmental initiatives

Two key Port of Montreal partners – OOCL and Desgagnés – have recently had their environmental initiatives recognized by prestigious awards.

OOCL acknowledged by freight forwarders

Grace Liang, president of OOCL (Canada) accepts the Forwarders Celebrate
Associates Award for Environmental Excellence.

International freight consolidation and logistics provider OOCL was recently honoured with the Environmental Excellence Award at the Forwarders Celebrate Associates (FCA) gala dinner in Toronto. The Canadian International Freight Forwarders Association bestows the award to an associate member firm that clearly demonstrates its commitment to environmental excellence with a corporate-wide approach to sustainability and policies that have a proven record of improving environmental performance and/or stewardship.

“We’re so pleased to be able to recognize and reward OOCL for its commitment to a better global environment,” says Ruth Snowden, CIFFA’s executive director. “I served on the judging panel and selecting just one winner in each category – Environmental Excellence, Innovation, Community Commitment, Humanitarian Outreach – was extremely difficult because the applications were all so compelling.”

The panel chose OOCL for several reasons, including its proactive stance in minimizing its carbon footprint and improving air quality.

Since 2004, OOCL has significantly reduced the emissions from its ships to lower the company’s overall environmental footprint by 39 %. The emissions were decreased through the purchase of newer container ships that are much more energy efficient, as well as the installation of state-of-the-art equipment on existing ships.

Grace Liang, the president of OOCL (Canada), accepted the award on the company’s behalf. “We are very grateful that CIFFA has provided the business community with a platform to showcase our dedication to environmental excellence,” she told PortInfo. “The award recognition is a huge encouragement for OOCL to continue our good work in meeting the needs of our stakeholders who are paying more attention to greener supply chains.”

OOCL has documented its progress in lowering emissions using the Clean Shipping Index developed as a business tool for the industry by the international Clean Cargo Working Group. The company has also demonstrated its environmental leadership with tree-planting initiatives, a rainwater harvesting project, and various environmental awareness campaigns worldwide.

Daniel Côté, environmental advisor at
Transport Desgagnés.

Silver and gold certification for Desgagnés

Groupe Desgagnés and its subsidiary, Transport Desgagnés, have respectively earned the Gold and Silver levels of certification within the ICI ON RECYCLE! (Here We Recycle!) program operated by Recyc-Québec, a government organization dedicated to reducing waste in the province through recycling.

The Gold standard was awarded to Groupe Desgagnés for the substantial efforts made by all of its personnel to reduce and recycle waste throughout the company’s headquarters. “The different measures put in place by Groupe Desgagnés facilitated the reuse of 90.84% of its residual waste materials,” says Mélanie Cloutier, Recyc-Québec’s communications advisor.

Transport Desgagnés was given a Silver certification for its success in recycling 85.39% of residual waste aboard the Camilla Desgagnés vessel. “Transport Desgagnés established a systematic recovery of all paper, cardboard, plastic, glass, metal and other recyclable materials on board after conducting a waste management audit of the ship with the help of a consulting firm,” Cloutier points out.

Recyc-Québec also recognized the leadership role that Transport Desgagnés has assumed in helping the Green Marine environmental program to define the criteria for waste management aboard ships.

“We are very proud of these achievements and will continue our commitment by embarking upon the ICI ON RECYCLE! certification for three other vessels next year,” says Daniel Côté, environmental advisor at Transport Desgagnés. “Obtaining these certificates demonstrates that it is possible to significantly reduce and recycle onboard waste and this recognition will help to mobilize others towards excellence.”