721 - 10/10 - Onshore power - San Francisco, USA
The Association would like to inform Members operating cruise and passenger vessels calling at the Port of San Francisco, that the Port recently became the fourth in the world to hook up cruise ships to onshore power supplies in a bid to reduce air pollution.
The project is expected to remove more than a ton of harmful particles from the air each year and that number is expected to double as more ships are outfitted to use this kind of onshore power. Diesel burning generators which power most passenger ships can give off 140 pounds of particles and more than a ton of smog forming oxides into the air in a single 10 hour visit.
Currently, both conventional cargo and passenger ships are required by Californian regulations to switch from dirty bunker fuel to diesel within 24 miles of the coast. However, diesel fuel is still relatively high in sulphur and soot. Reducing these amounts will greatly help to improve air quality.
Onshore power will be used by about 15 of the 50 cruise ships that come to San Francisco in the next year and as many as 40 after that. Other ports with onshore power for cruise ships are Seattle, Juneau (Alaska) and Vancouver. As more and more ports develop systems to help combat the problem of air pollution, Members should be aware of all local regulations and procedures before entering port.