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Saturday, May 28, 2011

Port of Rotterdam, Netherlands

The Port of Rotterdam is the largest port in Europe, located in the city of Rotterdam, South Holland, the Netherlands. From 1962 until 2004 it was the world's busiest port, now overtaken by first Shanghai and then Singapore. In 2009, Rotterdam was the world's tenth-largest container port in terms of twenty-foot equivalent units (TEU) handled (2008: ninth, 2006: sixth).
Covering 105 square kilometers (40.5 sq mi), the port of Rotterdam now stretches over a distance of 40 kilometers (25 mi). It consists of the city center's historic harbor area, including Delfshaven; the Maashaven/Rijnhaven/Feijenoord complex; the harbours around Nieuw-Mathenesse; Waalhaven; Vondelingenplaat; Eemhaven; Botlek; Europoort, situated along the Calandkanaal, Nieuwe Waterweg and Scheur (the latter two being continuations of the Nieuwe Maas); and the reclaimed Maasvlakte area, which projects into the North Sea.


Most important for the port of Rotterdam are the petrochemical industry and general cargo transshipment handlings. The harbour functions as an important transit point for transport of bulk and other goods between the European continent and other parts of the world. From Rotterdam goods are transported by ship, river barge, train or road. 2000 the Betuweroute, a fast cargo railway from Rotterdam to Germany, has been under construction. The Dutch part of this railway has been opened in 2007. Large oil refineries are located west of the city. The river Meuse and Rhine also provide excellent access to the hinterland.
Since

In the past five years the industrialized skyline has been changed by the addition of large numbers of wind turbines taking advantage of the exposed coastal conditions. The construction of a second Maasvlakte received initial political approval in 2004, but was stopped by the Raad van State (the Dutch Council of
State, which advises the government and parliament on legislation and governance) in 2005, because the plans did not take enough account of environmental issues. On October 10, 2006, however, approval was acquired to start construction in 2008, aiming for the first ship to anchor in 2013.

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