Busy Dredging Days Explored New Frontiers05/12/2011
|CEDA Dredging Days 2011, held from 9th to 11th November 2011 in the Ahoy conference centre in Rotterdam, The Netherlands, highlighted the emergence of a new trend. With its central theme 'Dredging and Beyond', it focused on areas where dredging is becoming part of increasingly broader, integrated projects, such as dredging for offshore oil and gas-winning purposes, deepsea mining and building with nature for soft and hard dredging solutions. Around 280 experts from over 20 countries spent two days discussing and debating dredging with their peers.|
The conference started by two keynote presentations in which prominent experts shared their insights about the requirements of and opportunities in their respective fields in the context of dredging. First Prof. Peter Halbach from Berlin's Free University talked about mining of deepsea minerals. Then Hans de Boer, managing director of the Association of Dutch Suppliers in the Oil and Gas Industry, took the floor to talk about developments in the Dutch offshore industry. Although both of these industries have used the dredging sector's services for many years, their requirements are changing fast as their operations move to deeper and deeper waters. The conference presentations in two dedicated sessions featuring exciting new technologies left no doubt that the dredging field is matching the speed when responding to these demands.
The concept of working/building with nature itself is not new and has been used in the past for creating wetlands, beach nourishments, coastal restorations and so on. Recently however, more effort is being put into applying it in an increasing number of countries in order to achieve win-win solution for both the economy and the environment. CEDA Dredging Days 2011 explained the concept and in three technical sessions presented related research and case studies.
The conference programme also included the Academic Session featuring science by PhD students and faculty. The talks covered a broad range of topics as speakers of this session did not have to adhere to the conference theme.
The IADC Young Authors Award was given to Bas Borsje, Deltares/ University of Twente Ecoshape, the Netherlands and colleagues for the paper entitled "Biogeomorphological Interactions on a Nourished Tidal Flat: Lessons Learned on Building with Nature."
The conference was complemented by a dredging exhibition with seventeen stands where CEDA member companies showcased their most recent equipment and services, especially in the oil, gas and mineral-winning areas and when working with nature. The following companies participated in the exhibition: Aqua Vision; Damen Dredging Equipment; DEME; Denialink; IHC Merwede; Marinestar; Nortek; Prolec; QPS; RKT International; Rotonics Manufacturing; Seatools; Van Oord Offshore; VOSTA LMG.
An optional technical visit to IHC Merwede's Kinderdijk shipyard took place before the conference on 9th November 2011. Many delegates took advantage of this rare opportunity. The Deep Sea Dredging & Mining Unit and the OceanflORE joint venture were excellent hosts showing participants around the yard. They did not hesitate to arrange taxis to accommodate those delegates who decided in the very last minutes to join the appreciated tour.
CEDA remained true to its objective "to provide a meeting place to share knowledge, information and experience, to network and socialise". The packed meeting room even during the last session on Friday afternoon, the buzz in the exhibition area during the lunch and coffee pauses and during the CEDA Netherlands reception and farewell drinks are all testament to that.
CEDA is grateful to the following CEDA Member companies and organisations for their support to Dredging Days 2011: Seatools (main sponsor); DPC (official media partner); Cable Arm, Damen Dredging Equipment, Deltares, IHC Merwede, iPS, IRO, Vereniging van Waterbouwers, Vuyk Engineering Rotterdam.
The CEDA Dredging Days 2011 conference proceedings with all presented papers can be ordered from the CEDA Secretariat (email@example.com). Most of the presentation files have been made available to conference delegates and CEDA corporate members shortly after the event and will be made available to the public after 15th February 2012 on the conference's website and in the CEDA Digital Library.
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