Contecon Manzanillo obtains the certification and becomes Mexico’s first Carbon-Neutral Port


Contecon Manzanillo S.A. de C.V. (Contecon Manzanillo), a business unit of International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) and concessionaire of the Specialized Container Terminal of the North Zone of the Port of Manzanillo (TEC-II), is the first organization across the Mexican port industry to be certified carbon neutral.

The Carbon Neutrality UNE-14064-3:2019 certification recognizes Contecon Manzanillo’s commitment to global initiatives to combat climate change, promote renewable energy and decarbonize ports and maritime transport. Earning this distinction favoring the environment consolidates Contecon’s leadership as a vanguard port terminal in favor of Manzanillo, Colima, and Mexico.

The carbon neutrality certificate highlights the company’s efforts to offset greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions through reduction and compensation practices. These efforts include counteracting and maintaining zero emission from equipment such as cranes, port tractors, air conditioners, and other polluting sources; compensating for emissions through sponsorships of forests and protected areas; and initiating sustainable initiatives like the execution of circular economies and incorporation of technologies that reduce the operational impact of the Port of Manzanillo – the primary port in the Mexican Pacific.

José Antonio Contreras (right), Contecon Manzanillo’s chief executive officer, receives the carbon-neutral certificate from Hermann Saenger, TÜV Rheinland de Mexico country manager

José Antonio Contreras, Contecon Manzanillo’s chief executive officer, explained the certification’s relevance not only for Mexico’s port sector but also for industrial activity in general: “We are proud to be the first terminal in Mexico verified under this regulation. At Contecon, we are quite clear about maintaining an agenda aligned with our business in which climate change is combatted and the use of renewable energy is encouraged. More importantly, we are moving firmly towards the decarbonization of ports and maritime transport in Mexico. Having this type of certification portrays us as an organization that demonstrates commitment, talent, and a real position for change in the face of environmental problems.”

Passing the audit performed by TÜV RHEINLAND, Contecon Manzanillo demonstrated its ability to adequately reduce its greenhouse gas emissions and move forward in a timely manner toward an energy transition across Mexico’s maritime transport. In 2021, the company’s direct and indirect CO2e emissions amounted to 25,368.67 tons while total offset emissions amounted to 25,369 tons.

“We recognize Contecon Manzanillo’s vision and leadership in the industry by maintaining its operations in constant improvement since being awarded previous certifications for its management system, and now voluntarily submitting to verification by TÜV Rheinland of Mexico for its greenhouse gas emissions generated in 2021 and the neutralization process that was carried out. Granting this certification is a historic event for Contecon Manzanillo. At TÜV Rheinland de México, we are proud to have collaborated with them in their journey to become the first port terminal in Mexico to obtain the carbon neutral certification,” said Hermann Saenger, TÜV Rheinland de Mexico country manager.

The certification delivery protocol event on 27 January was attended by federal authorities headed by Rear Admiral Víctor Manuel Ozuna Díaz, general director of Port Development and Administration and representative of Navy Secretary Admiral José Rafael Ojeda Durán; and Lic. Franciso Rodríguez García, Colima secretary of Economic Development.

Secretary García congratulated Contecon Manzanillo for the milestone: “On behalf of the government of the state of Colima and Governor Indira Vizcaíno Silva, I am pleased to recognize a company that has worked so arduously to achieve the ISO 14064-3 certification and contribute to sustainability. I want to make clear the recognition of the people of Colima to José Antonio Contréras and to all members of his team who work tirelessly in this company.”

“The certification also signifies the commitment and effort of Mexican ports to achieve the highest operating standards at the international level, as well as the genuine interest in actions that are friendly to the environment, thus supporting our human right to a healthy environment,” said Rear Admiral Víctor Manuel Ozuna Díaz, general director of Port Development and Administration.

According to the study Energy Transition of Maritime Transport: Strategic Opportunities in Mexico conducted by the Global Maritime Forum and the University College London, regional and global maritime transport effectively connects economies through the movement of goods and currently represents between 80 percent and 90 percent of world trade. The shipping sector emits two to three percent of global GHG emissions and contributes around 13 percent of sulfur and nitrogen oxide emissions to global air pollution. Hence the urgency and commitment to undertake a transformation of the port industry towards increasingly sustainable practices.

“At Contecon, we know the transition of fuel in maritime transport and the commitment of more organizations in our sector to become zero-emission industries is a challenge. At the same time, it is an opportunity that can unleash investment for Mexico, catalyze innovation and create the sustainable growth necessary for trade not only in the country but in the entire region and its international connections. To do this, the sector will need to develop and build new ships, integrate and adopt innovative technological solutions, and develop new fuel supply chains and shore-based infrastructure while taking advantage of synergies with other sectors seeking to decarbonize their business activities,” said Mr. Contreras.

“We reiterate our commitment to the environment through the drive towards decarbonization in our processes and by ensuring a better future for all Mexicans. Contecon’s initiatives are aligned with the international commitments led by the United Nations and organizations such as the Global Maritime Forum for sustainable global maritime trade,” he concluded.


The Colima Post