Washington State ports recognized for clean air plan

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The Ports of Tacoma and Seattle have won a 2011 Vision 2040 award from the Puget Sound Regional Council for their Northwest Ports Clean Air Strategy. The awards recognize innovative projects and programs that help ensure a sustainable future as the region grows. The Northwest Ports Clean Air Strategy, which targets greenhouse gas and diesel particulate emissions from maritime operations, is a joint effort of the Ports of Seattle, Tacoma and Port Metro Vancouver, B.C.

All three ports have used the strategy to inventory emissions, employ green procurement policies and implement equipment and energy efficiency programs. “We were impressed with the collaborative approach of the ports’ strategy,” says Mukilteo Councilmember Jennifer Gregerson, chair of the Vision 2040 awards committee. “It shows that working together can help regional interests to stay competitive while meeting their environmental goals.”

The Seattle port estimates that nearly 500 tons of sulfur emissions have been eliminated through the use of cleaner fuels and that more than 116 vessels from eight container carriers and four cruise lines have participated in the program. To reduce emissions from cargo-hauling trucks, the port also bought and scrapped 280 older diesel trucks and has barred pre-1994 trucks from its container terminals.