Posted on December 13, 2023
H.E. Alexander De Croo, Prime Minister of Belgium, witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding on Energy Transition Cooperation between three Belgian and three Houston-based partners to boost transatlantic cooperation on the green transition. The Center for Houston’s Future, Waterstofnet, Port Houston, the Port of Antwerp-Bruges, Exmar, and the Blue Sky Maritime Coalition agreed to explore a win-win partnership around an import-export coalition for renewable and low-carbon molecules, a green shipping corridor and the exchange of best practices, knowledge and research.
The changing regulatory landscape and ambitious climate targets on both sides of the Atlantic provide the background for ambitious cooperation. The Greater Houston area is home to some of the biggest energy producers in the world, and the increase in the production of renewable and low-carbon energy offers perspectives for future export.
Belgium is a strategic energy hub in the heart of Europe, including for the import and transit of renewable and low-carbon molecules, with the Port of Antwerp-Bruges as a crucial gateway with extensive storage capacity and connectivity to European markets and huge off-take.
Houston and Antwerp are the biggest petrochemical clusters in the world; many Belgian and US companies are present on both sides, and the long-standing commercial maritime connection between both ports is a backbone for cooperation.
The signing of this Memorandum of Understanding is a first step in solidifying such a partnership between crucial stakeholders based in countries that are strategic allies. Other stakeholders on both sides are welcome and encouraged to join as partners start working on a roadmap for implementation.
Blue Sky Maritime Coalition brings together more than 120 member organizations, including leadership of the green shipping corridor from the American Bureau of Shipping (ABS), to work on maritime decarbonization and transportation of clean energy fuels with the other partners.
EXMAR is a Belgian provider of floating solutions for the operation, transportation and transformation of gas and has a fleet of more than 40 gas carriers and floating gas terminals.
For more than 100 years, Port Houston has owned and operated the public wharves and terminals along the Houston Ship Channel, including the area’s largest breakbulk facility and two of the most efficient container terminals in the country.