Long Beach $750m redevelopment project could cut air pollution

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Air pollution would be cut in half on the west coast of the US following a proposed $750 million, 10-year project, to redevelop the Middle Harbour in Long Beach Port, California.

According to a draft environmental impact report/environmental impact statement (EIR/EIS) released by the Board of Harbour Commissioners, the Middle Harbour Redevelopment Project would cut air pollution at two port terminals by 50% or more from existing levels as well as creating some14,000 new, permanent jobs.

The Middle Harbour Redevelopment Plan proposes to reconfigure two older, irregularly shaped container shipping terminals to create one rectangular-shaped facility that would operate in a more efficient and environmentally-friendly manner

Updating the older terminals would enable the port to fully implement its Green Port Policy and Clean Air Action Plan, significantly cutting air pollution even as containerised trade increases.

Plans also aim to expand Middle Harbour’s on-dock rail infrastructure to move more cargo by rail directly from the waterfront, which the report says would take as many as 1,000 trucks a day off roadways. Other proposals include requiring all ships to use shore-side electrical power, shut down their diesel engines at berth, and use low-sulphur fuels for their main and auxiliary engines.

Port Executive Director Richard Steinke said: “As proposed in this detailed draft environmental report, the Middle Harbour project would create the most environmentally responsible shipping terminal anywhere in the world.”