The sand movement along the shore of Israel is from the south to the north, the source of the sand being the Nile River in Egypt. The sand is moved by sea currents from the River’s estuary along the shores of the country. During the construction of the Eitan Terminal in the Port of Ashdod, the port activity that might be dangerous was removed from population concentrations thru the drying of the sea for building the new piers. However, the drying created an environmental problem.
Drying the sea or constructing a new breakwater, create an accumulation of sand that is trapped south of it and a shortage of sand supply on its north side, which may cause the retreat of the shoreline. A special project at the Port of Ashdod tangles with this phenomenon. Each year about 180,000 cubic meters of retained sand in the south of the breakwater, are being transferred to the north of it. This way, the port becomes “transparent” as far as the sand movement is concerned and damage to beaches north of the port is prevented.
Prevention of air contamination when loading bulk ships
The Port of Ashdod Company takes many measures to limit the dust discharge during the loading of bulk cargos. Each year millions of tons of fertilizers of the type of potash and phosphate are exported thru the Port of Ashdod, to many markets throughout the world. In the past, the bulk ships were loaded by means of a pipe loader that caused increased emissions of phosphate and potash dust because of its method of operation, resulting in the contamination of the sea and air.
A solution to the problem was achieved thru the combined efforts of the Port’s Company and the Israel Chemicals and Fertilizers Company. In an investment plan stretched over a period of four years, all the old loaders were replaced by dust suppressor ecological loaders of the type Cleveland Cascade. Those systems make possible the loading of all types of fertilizers while minimizing the air contamination. In research conducted after the installation of the ecological loaders, it was found that the reduction in the contamination of the air and sea was at a rate in access of 95%.
Prevention of sea contamination during cargo unloading
Millions of tons of bulk cargos are being unloaded annually in the Port of Ashdod. Among those cargos is sulfur, grains, Petroleum Coke, fertilizers and other materials. The unloading of those cargos was done by means of a shovel crane into trucks located at the bottom of the unloading funnel, as customary in many ports in the world. During the unloading, remnants of cargo fall onto the piers and in the winter time, before cleaning of the piers can be done, may be swept into the sea by rain water and cause the contamination of the sea.
In order to solve this problem, all the bulk and general cargo piers in the Jubilee Port of Ashdod were planned with a rear drainage system combined with settling pits, assuring that all cargo leftovers on the piers will be absorbed by the settling pits and not overflow into the sea.