Hamburg Awaits Decision on Elbe Deepening

Image Courtesy: HHM/Michael Lindner

The decision to adjust the navigation channel on the Lower and Outer Elbe River, an expansion project which would enable German Port of Hamburg to accommodate mega ships, is expected to be made in February.

The waterway is used to reach the Port of Hamburg. In view of the rapidly growing ships, Hamburg is dependent on adapting its seaward access to this technical development in the long term, the Hamburg Port Authority said.

During the oral proceedings held this week, a federal court in Leipzig discussed legal and technical questions related to the adjustment of the navigation channel for containerships with a depth of 14.5 meters. The City of Hamburg and the federal government presented their arguments and results obtained in investigations.

“We are confidently looking forward to the pronouncement of the decision which is announced for February 9, 2017,” Frank Horch, Senator for Economy, Transport and Innovation of the City of Hamburg, said:

The forthcoming decision of the court on the Elbe deepening will show for the first time how the legal framework on water resources management and water protection has to be applied Germany-wide, the port authority said.

The Hamburg Port Authority said it is prepared to start dredging operations immediately after the positive decision is made.

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