The American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) — the unified voice of seaports in the Americas — announced a commitment among member ports to address climate change on a national and global scale. Efforts, include plans to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, support facility electrification, and increase the use of alternative energy sources, while working cooperatively across the maritime industry to advance world-wide climate change initiatives.
AAPA has taken several steps to take a leadership goal in the fight against climate change, including advocating for the creation of a federal port electrification grant program, becoming a founding member of the Blue Sky Maritime Coalition, and announcing a partnership with PortVision50..
“We are proud to announce a set of commitments that reflect an energized and dedicated membership ready to forge a leadership position in the maritime industry’s fight against climate change,” said AAPA President and CEO Christopher Connor. “For decades, American ports have led local and regional innovation in support of sustainability, healthy communities, and environmental stewardship. Today, their combined experience will join collaborative global initiatives to address one of the most urgent challenges of our age.”
AAPA recently became a founding member of the Blue Sky Maritime Coalition, created to facilitate collaboration across the U.S. and Canadian maritime industry to reduce GHG emissions. Its founding membership is comprised of more than 30 organizations including energy providers, financial institutions, ports, logistics providers, manufacturers, shippers, and seaborne carriers.
“We are thrilled to have the American Association of Ports Authorities join the Blue Sky Maritime Coalition as a Founding Member,” said Blue Sky President and CEO David Cummins. “Ports in the U.S. and Canada are at the heart of North American waterborne transportation operations, and AAPA’s proven ability to connect and unite the diverse voices of the ports around common interests is perfectly aligned with Blue Sky’s mission to achieve commercially viable maritime decarbonization through collaboration along this entire value chain. We whole-heartedly welcome AAPA to the Blue Sky Maritime Coalition, and we know they will be an integral part of the conversation, solutions and our overall success.”
AAPA also announced a partnership with PortVision50, a group that helps maritime stakeholders understand the technical and operational solutions available to the industry for achieving the goals of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) GHG Strategy. PortVision50 will work to ensure that port infrastructure projects align with global projects supporting IMO GHG reduction targets for 2030 and 2050.
“PortVsion50 (PV50) is dedicated to empowering the maritime industry to ensure seamless onboarding of the IMO regulations aimed at reducing GHG emissions with specific focus on Ports and Terminals in North America, said Margaret Doyle, President & Founding Board Member of PortVision50. This MOU with AAPA will enable PV50 to use mutual platforms to reach these stakeholders.”
In the U.S., AAPA applauds Congress for including a new $3.5 billion port electrification grant program in the budget reconciliation bill currently under consideration. The program would spur the adoption of electric cargo handling equipment, shore power, infrastructure resiliency, and electric grid modernization. AAPA and 30 ports and regional port associations signed a letter urging the quick passage of this legislation.
“A port industry-specific grant program to reduce emissions and electrify port equipment will help spur the adoption of green energy and equipment at ports,” the letter said, “and allow for faster installation of electric grid and electric equipment charging infrastructure that will be critical in the effort to create a sustainable maritime transportation industry.”
Photo: Christopher Connor, President & CEO of AAPA and Margaret Doyle, President and Founder of PortVision50 Sign MOU at AAPA Annual Convention last week.