Ocean carriers, SoCal ports announce low-sulfur fuel subsidy program
Ocean carriers servicing the West Coast have partnered with the two Southern California ports to develop a fuel subsidy program to help offset the cost of using cleaner burning low-sulfur diesel fuel in their main engines.
The program will see the ports pay the price differential between the cost of bunker fuel and low-sulfur fuel for use in the main engines of participating vessels.
The ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles released details of the program later Thursday.
To receive the subsidies, a vessel must also use low-sulfur fuel in their auxiliary engines while at berth and participate in a program that encourages vessels to reduce their speed as they enter the port areas.
The voluntary fuel subsidy plan was first presented to the ports by the Pacific Merchant Shipping Association, which counts as it members about 60 international shipping lines and marine terminal operators.
'The voluntary incentive-based program is the direct result of a coordinated partnership between the ports and their tenants to reduce ship emissions,' said John McLaurin, president of the PMSA. 'The cleaner fuel initiative builds upon other successful voluntary emissions reduction programs around the ports including the vessel speed reduction program which has demonstrated a 90 percent compliance rate.'
The individual PMSA membership, and the group's board, have agreed to the fuel subsidy program in concept, but it will be up to each individual firm to decide whether to participate. ' Keith Higginbotham