An unprecedented surge in cargo volume lifted the Port of Long Beach to its busiest February on record. Terminal operators and dockworkers moved over 770,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs), a 40% plus increase over February 2020 and marking the largest year-over-year increase for a single month in the Port’s 110-year history.
Metro Ports, an experienced terminal operator and stevedoring company with locations across the country serving the waterfront community with both cargo and passengers handling services announced it purchased a second Tier 4 locomotive engine for its Pier G operations at the Port of Long Beach in California.
Through the $1.2 million investment, Metro Ports anticipates reducing pollutants such as nitrogen oxides, particulate matter and reactive organic gas from their air emissions by more than 4.5 tons over the next 15 years. That represents a significant improvement in air-quality emissions over the local industry standard of currently operating Tier 2 equipment, Metro Ports officials said in a press release.
"The move coincides with the port's clean-air action plan, Metro Ports recognizes its position as an industry leader and seeks to inspire awareness with its early adoption of the newest technology in clean-air equipment," said Metro Ports President Robert Dickey.
The first unit, produced by “National Railway Equipment Company”, was purchased when the technology was still considered experimental. With their recent $1.2M investment, Metro Ports expects to reduce air emissions such as nitrogen oxides (NOx), particulate matter (PM) and reactive organic gas (ROG) by over 4.5 tons over the next 15 years. This represents a significant improvement in air quality emissions over the local industry standard of currently operating Tier 2 equipment. The "Tier" number is a classification assigned to operating equipment by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”), with a higher tier being assigned to cleaner-burning equipment with lower emissions. These improvements are not required by regulatory agencies but a voluntary, proactive step to lead the charge in environmental stewardship.
The new locomotive's addition is a project four years in the making, involving Knoxville Locomotive Works and the South Coast Air Quality Management District, which coordinated to procure grant funds through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that were aimed at projects that achieve significant reductions in diesel emission. These funds contributed to cover the total $3.2 million cost of the purchase, officials said.
Mario Cordero, executive director of Port of Long Beach, addressed and thanked frontline men and women who kept the Port operational during the pandemic and helped set a record year.