The port of Sète set up an incentive system to encourage virtuous ships called Environmental Ship Index (ESI) applicable since 2021.
The environmental commitment beyond regulatory requirements helps to forge a brand image and is part of a CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) approach. This is what the Environmental Ship Index (ESI) offers. Established in 2010 and entered into force in 2012 by the IAPH (International Association of Ports and Harbors) and the ports of the North European Range. This label is encouraged by 56 ports around the world and concerns more than 8,400 ships. On the initiative of the ports, it financially rewards shipping companies that use ships with a low environmental footprint, taking into account the reduction of atmospheric emissions (CO2, SOx, NOx) and noise.
In France, the ports of Le Havre, Rouen, Paris, La Rochelle, Marseille, La Reunion, Bordeaux, Dunkerque and now Sète are part of the ESI network.
From an eligibility threshold defined by each port, and whose score varies from 0 to 100, ships can obtain benefits such as reductions in port fees at each of their stopovers. The parameters are; the quality of the fuels used, the performance of the engine, as well as the equipment on board (energy efficiency, shore power supply system, etc.). It is an incentive system, based on volunteering and self-declaration. The owner must declare the performance indices of his vessel. In Sète, ships exceeding the score of 30 will be able to benefit from an additional 10% reduction on ship port fees.