The renewable fuel industry is experiencing rapid growth, with several customers expanding their operations, leading to increased demand, particularly in the region. Marijn Kuiper, Director of the Maastank terminal, states: “To meet and even surpass this demand, expanding the terminal is a carefully considered and strategic move.”
“Comprehensive Service from A to Z”
Under the name Tank Pit 8, a total of 13 storage tanks will be added, with a combined storage capacity of approximately 29,000 cubic meters (CBM). To make these tanks operational, considerations include pump chambers, docks, dock pipelines, and container heating areas. These facilities will ensure that the product in arriving containers is properly heated. Kuiper adds: “This enables us to provide customers with a complete end-to-end service.” The expansion of this terminal seamlessly aligns with Koole Terminals’ current business strategy and its goal of building a diverse customer portfolio. Jouri Verheul, Supervisor of Operations at the Maastank terminal, is actively involved in all operational aspects of Maastank. Verheul expresses his excitement about the expansion, stating: “Our tanks are often filled to capacity. With the arrival of these tanks, we can plan for the future, benefiting our customers.” With the addition of these tanks, the total storage capacity will reach 116,000 CBM.
Kuiper sees the expansion as an opportunity to work more with renewable resources and less with minerals. He explains: “Historically, our terminals have been well-suited for housing raw materials needed for vegetable oil. This allows us to grow, expand, and adapt to the transition.” Kuiper adds that their focus with Maastank is on the food, feed, and technical products sectors, aiming for broad involvement in the industry to establish long-term and effective collaborations with their customers. Verheul notes: “Operationally, there won’t be many changes, except for the additional personnel required. This will lead to some team adjustments to accommodate the expansion.”
Planning and Safety for Tank Pit 8
The initial investment decision for the project was made in the last quarter of 2022. The first piles were driven just before the summer of this year, and the expectation is that the new tanks will become operational in January 2024. So far, the project has been progressing smoothly without major setbacks. This is partly due to the use of the same contractors as in previous projects and the client’s familiarity with the process. This continuity is crucial for both project progress and safety. Contractors are well-versed in the procedures and safety protocols required. Daily work permits are issued with explanations and expectations, and daily safety meetings are held to minimize incidents. Kuiper emphasizes: “Safety is always a prerequisite in any collaboration.” Both men have full confidence that Project Tank Pit 8 will proceed smoothly. They are even looking ahead to the future. Verheul says: “As soon as it’s up and running, we want to start on Tank Pit 9. This expansion will include an extension of the dock, allowing two ocean vessels and two inland barges to arrive and be unloaded simultaneously.” Kuiper proudly adds: “This is a significant step forward for the Maastank terminal.”
Photography and videoproduction: Van Der Kloet