AQMD recognizes unique oil tanker ‘shore power’ project
Southern California regional air pollution authorities on Friday, October 2, 2009, presented the Port of Long Beach with an award for becoming the first seaport in the world to construct an oil shipping terminal that offers clean “shore power” to improve air quality.
Port and BP America officials accepted the honor from the South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD) at the agency’s 21st annual “Clean Air Awards” ceremony in downtown Los Angeles. The awards recognize individuals, organizations, communities and businesses that have made a significant contribution to cleaner air.
“We’re happy to be recognized, along with BP, for our efforts in creating the world’s first shore-powered berth for oil tankers,” said Richard D. Steinke, Port of Long Beach Executive Director. “This was a challenging project that drew on the talents and efforts of many Port and BP employees, not to mention our many contractors and Southern California Edison.”
The Port of Long Beach outfitted BP’s oil tanker terminal on Pier T with the ability to allow tankers to safely “plug in” to the landside electrical grid for all power needs while docked and unloading crude oil. BP America retrofitted two of its Alaska oil tankers to plug in.
It was one of two seaport-oriented Clean Air Awards presented by the AQMD on Friday. In addition, Advanced Cleanup Technologies Inc. earned an award for developing a “sock-on-a-stack” or “bonnet” system that captures 95 percent of the air pollution from a docked ship where shore power is not available. The system is undergoing demonstration testing at a Port of Long Beach terminal.
Both the awards were in the Advancement of Air Pollution Technology category.
When it comes to the shore-powered oil tanker berth, it’s calculated that with visits from the first two Alaskan Tanker Co. ships equipped to plug in, 30 tons of air pollution will be eliminated per year. Plugging an oil tanker in during off-loading operations is the pollution-reduction equivalent of taking 187,000 cars off the roadways for a day.
The shore power berth on Pier T was dedicated on June 3, 2009. It was built at a cost of $23.7 million, with $17.5 million from the Port and $6.2 million from BP America. It supplies up to 8 megawatts of power at 6,600 volts safely to docked vessels, allowing the ships to shut down their diesel engines that they formerly had to run to provide power to run on-ship pumps, lights, and communication and ventilation systems.