Using electrical power for ships at berth instead of diesel-burning engines, ‘cold ironing’ can greatly reduce air pollution from ships. When ships use shore power, they connect into landside electricity for their power needs at berth, avoiding to run diesel-fueled auxiliary on-board engines.
According to estimations, shore power is able to limit air pollution from ships at berth by 95%.
Regarding the Port of Long Beach, it has completed over $185 million worth of dockside power hookups and other infrastructure to facilitate shore power. This comes after California mandated on January 1, 2014, that at least half of all container ships must run on shore-side electricity at berth.
What is more, carriers are subject to an additional requirement: Each fleet must reduce its total emissions by 50%.
Currently, higher compliance rates are being phased in over six years, with the rule affecting fleets calling at the ports of Long Beach, Los Angeles, San Diego, Oakland, San Francisco and Hueneme and applies to all operators.
Moreover, the Port of Long Beach is not involved in electricity billing or shore power charges. Each terminal has its own account and rate structure with Southern California Edison, the local electricity provider.
However, there are very few funding opportunities for shipside retrofits, and grant programs generally require shore power usage levels that surpass the regulatory requirements.
When the Port becomes aware of funding opportunities, it makes every attempt to notify shipping lines
the Port of Long Beach said.
One potential funding source is the Carl Moyer Program, which is provided locally by the South Coast Air Quality Management District. Eligibility criteria and long-term shore power usage levels apply.
Finally, the Port provides free dockage for ships that comply with the shore power regulation and the 40 nautical mile Vessel Speed Reduction Program, called the ‘Dockage Reduction Incentive Program for Green Calls’.