Long Beach port adding electricity for docked ships

This portion of the coast, centered around the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, is utilized for such diverse purposes as shipping, recreation, tourism, fishing and offshore oil drilling.
This portion of the coast, centered around the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, is utilized for such diverse purposes as shipping, recreation, tourism, fishing and offshore oil drilling. Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images

Port officials in Long Beach are dedicating a new facility that will allow ships to plug into shore power on the dock. The upgrade is expected to reduce pollution.

The idea of on-dock power is to cut diesel emissions during idling. Ships at berth need electricity for refrigeration, pumps, ventilation and communication systems.

Traditionally they've run auxiliary engines to keep the lights on and the air flowing. But at these new facilities, retrofitted ships can simply plug in to electric power.

The project is part of the Clean Air Action Plan for the ports. On-dock power cuts emissions — including greenhouse gases.

The new Pier C terminal power is the fourth set of hookups at the Long Beach port. Matson Navigation will be the first to plug in a container ship.

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