Virginia International Terminals Inc. (VIT) on July 31 completed its first month of operation using ultra low-sulphur diesel (ULSD) fuel, a switch that comes nearly three years ahead of a federally-mandated change for ports to use cleaner-burning fuel in their equipment. International stevedore and terminal operating company Marine Terminals Corp, meanwhile, has gone beyond mandated requirements for cargo-handling equipment set by the California Air Resources Board (CARB).
Joseph A. Dorto, general manager of VIT, the private terminal operating company of the Virginia Port Authority (VPA), said: “We knew we were going to make this change and the decision was to go ahead and get moving now, ahead of the deadline, in case there were issues that needed to be ironed out. It has been a seamless transition and I expect the benefits to outweigh the costs.”
By order of the US Environmental Protection Agency, all ports had to begin using ULSD by July 1, 2007, while by July 1, 2010 all ports must be using the fuel. VIT owns 500 pieces of equipment that are capable of burning ULSD, all of which are now powered by it.