During her visit to Hamburg, the President of the European Central Bank (ECB), Christine Lagarde, informed herself at the container terminal of Hamburger Hafen und Logistik AG (HHLA) in Altenwerder about the company’s initiatives to support the EU’s climate policy goals and the effects of the current tense supply chains on terminal operations.


Full container yards at the terminals caused by massive ship delays and by congestion on roads and rails: during a visit to the Port of Hamburg, ECB President Christine Lagarde gained an impression of the effects of disrupted global supply chains. “Especially in a situation like this one, it’s obvious that a stable logistics network is important. Despite the challenges resulting from the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and the war in Ukraine, HHLA has been able to maintain operations at its terminals and hinterland connections, and thus to contribute to the stability of supply in Europe,” explained Angela Titzrath, Chairwoman of HHLA’s Executive Board. The Chairwoman pointed out that HHLA’s personnel and equipment are currently operating at full capacity to clear the backlog of ships in the German Bight. She added that collaboration among all participants in the logistics chain is an essential prerequisite.


Titzrath informed Lagarde about the advantages of HHLA-Terminal Altenwerder (CTA), which is largely automated and the world’s first container handling facility to be certified climate-neutral. “Our goal for the entire HHLA Group is to be climate-neutral by 2040,” Titzrath said. “By operating with green electricity or shifting container transportation from road to rail – as is the case here at Terminal Altenwerder – we are making a major contribution to improving the climate.”


For example, seaborne handling at CTA is managed by 14 electric container gantry cranes, which are already powered by 100 percent green energy. Added to these are approximately 90 automated guided vehicles (AGVs) that transport the containers from the gantry cranes to the yard. 80 percent of the AGVs are already completely electrically powered or operate on green electricity. By 2023, all AGVs are expected to be converted to fast-charging, lithium-ion batteries that are also powered by green electricity. These measures are part of HHLA’s comprehensive “Balanced Logistics” sustainability strategy. Titzrath emphasised that HHLA designs the entire logistics chain to be climate-friendly. For instance, rail subsidiary Metrans offers its customers “HHLA Pure” to offset their CO2 emissions.