Tuesday, August 23, 2011

SoCal Ports Release Road Map to Zero-Emission Vehicle Usage

The Southern California ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles on Monday issued a report detailing the road map the two ports will follow to evaluate and implement zero-emission technology to reduce air pollution generated by ports-servicing trains, trucks and yard equipment.

The report concludes that there are currently no zero-emission technology options being considered that are ready for full-scale implementation.

"There is no off-the-shelf technology or stand-alone strategy ready to launch to achieve zero emissions at the ports or throughout the region," commissioners from both ports were told by staff at a joint commission meeting on the topic in July. "This effort will require technological innovation, multiple approaches, and regional partnerships."

Currently existing technologies being looked at by the port include all-electric, hybrid-electric and hydrogen-fueled Class 8 big rigs and yard tractors, all-electric locomotives and/or electrified-train systems, and fixed cargo moving systems such as magnetic levitation systems.

While the ports conclude that no system is currently ready for implementation, the new report states that demonstration and test projects will continue on many of the technologies.

The report categorized the technologies into two major groups: near-term and long term. Technologies that stand a chance of being implementable within three years, including electric and hybrid-electric trucks and yard equipment, were categorized as near-term. Those with a longer than three year implementation outlook, such as electric trains, are considered long-term.

While the report sets forth the road down which the two ports hope to move as far as zero-emissions vehicles are implemented at the ports, the reports does not rise to the level of a full plan.