Friday , 23 August 2019
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The Virginia Port Authority (VPA) has made a first – early – payment on a US$50m environmental mitigation plan aimed at reducing the impact of the new Craney Island Marine Terminal on the Elizabeth River.

Environmental initiatives by US terminals

The $490,000 payment was delivered to The Elizabeth River Project to assist with the cost of restoring 10 acres of tidal wetlands at Paradise Creek Nature Park. The mitigation plan calls for a series of projects to restore more than 50 acres of wetlands on the river and to clean up all known ‘hotspots’ of contaminated sediment on the river bottom.

“We believe in The Elizabeth River Project’s mission and know that the money for the nature park is being used in the best interest of the river and the community,” said Jerry A. Bridges, the VPA’s executive director.

Meanwhile, the South Carolina State Ports Authority (SCSPA) has switched to cleaner-burning ultra-low-sulphur diesel fuel three years ahead of a federal mandate from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The mandate requires ULSD to be used in all off-road equipment by 2010.

“This move underscores our commitment to reduce air emissions and improve air quality in the greater Charleston region,” said Bernard S. Groseclose Jr., president and CEO of the SCSPA. “We are switching to cleaner fuel well ahead of the curve.”

Rubber-tyred gantry cranes (RTGs) will be the first equipment at Charleston to be fuelled with ULSD. Storage tanks that supply fuel to about 70 other pieces of on-terminal equipment, such as stacking cranes and yard trucks, will be filled later. The SCSPA purchases almost 1m gallons of diesel fuel annually.

This is the latest effort by the SCSPA to reduce its air emissions. In March, it signed a memorandum of agreement with South Carolina’s Department of Health and Environmental Control on cutting port-related diesel emissions. In this agreement, it committed to evaluate the use of cleaner fuels at its facilities, as well as to conduct an air emissions inventory of its facilities and fund a particulate matter monitoring station, among other measures.