Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Port of Los Angeles Developing Pollution Reduction Incentives

The Port of Los Angeles is creating a set of incentives to offer shipping lines to reduce air pollution from their vessels.

The port’s harbor board received an outline of the proposed program during its most recently business meeting in mid-November, and staff says it expects full recommendations for program participation sometime in 2012.

The port’s working with the International Association of Ports and Harbors, or IAPH, to develop the incentives. Port of LA Executive Director Geraldine Knatz is president of the IAPH.

The incentives are being devised so that the port can participate in the web-based Environmental Ship Index program, an international ship-rating system.

The ESI identifies voluntary enhancements in ship engines, fuel and technology that could be used to top environmental standards. It targets nitrogen oxides, sulfur oxides, diesel particulate and greenhouse gases and other air pollutants.

“The Port of Los Angeles is looking forward to being part of these international standards and setting the stage for North American ports to follow suit,” Knatz said. “As participation grows, the benefits increase for carriers and communities.”

Nine European ports -- including ones in Belgium, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Norway -- have signed on to participate in the ESI, and either already have incentive programs or are in the process of developing them.