This study highlights the challenges that the Port of Rotterdam area will probably face in the coming decades as global and European decarbonization efforts intensify. That the EU and other nations worldwide will strengthen their efforts to combat climate change is quite probable, as this will be needed if the international community’s climate change mitigation targets as laid out in the Paris Agreement are to be reached. In a decarbonizing world, however, the port’s industrial cluster will most likely not be able to retain its current form in the decades to come. Instead, some elements of the current cluster, specifically refineries and unabated fossil fuel power generation, will become less relevant over time as a result of changes in regulation and market demand associated with global and European decarbonization efforts.
However, the study’s three decarbonization scenarios for the Port of Rotterdam demonstrate that there are several conceivable pathways that would allow the current cluster to successfully adapt to the changing environment.