Port of San Diego Celebrates Shore Power Installation

Published Feb 25, 2014 6:20 PM by The Maritime Executive

The Port of San Diego has successfully switched on its new shore-power system at the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal, which will improve air quality and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by allowing cargo vessels to "plug in" rather than run their diesel engines while in port.

Construction on the $4.25 million project began in mid-2013 and was funded by the Port's Capital Improvement Program (CIP). The contractor was NEWest Construction in San Diego. On Monday, February 24, 2014, a ribbon cutting ceremony was held at the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal, celebrating the completion of the Port of San Diego's shore power project.

"The Port is proud to be a leader in environmental issues and continues to be a great steward of San Diego Bay," said Bob Nelson, Chairman of the Board of Port Commissioners. "By offering shore power, we not only improve air quality for communities nearby, but we also reduce our impact on the planet."

The installation of shore power has substantial environmental benefits:

Reduces greenhouse gas emissions by over 50% (more than 2,000 metric tons) per year. That's equivalent to greenhouse gas emissions from about 1,500 cars per year
Reduces emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx; an air pollutant) by approximately 95% or 70 tons per year. That's equivalent to NOx emissions from over 4,000 cars per year
Speakers at the ribbon cutting ceremony also included U.S. Congressman Scott Peters, City of San Diego Interim Mayor Todd Gloria, Dole Vice President Stuart Jablon and Environmental Health Coalition Executive Director Diane Takvorian.

The new shore power system will allow refrigerated cargo ships – including those from Dole Fresh Fruit – to "plug in" and use electrical power from SDG&E instead of relying on diesel fuel engines while at berth. This will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve air quality around Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal, with the community of Barrio Logan being the closest impacted neighborhood.

This project fulfills a mandate set forth by the California Air Resources Board requiring California ports and terminals to provide shore power to container, passenger and refrigerated-cargo ships. The Port of San Diego is already equipped to provide shore power to cruise ships that berth at both its B Street Pier Cruise Ship Terminal and Broadway Pier.

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