Cargo ships are enormous sources of air pollution. According to the Guardian newspaper, the 15 biggest ships produce more pollution than all of the cars in the world.
And though they must switch from filthy bunker fuel to lower polluting diesel fuel when they are close to U.S. shores, a container ship running its engines while at dock generates more air pollution than 40,000 cars. This pollution kills and sickens port workers and residents of port communities in the US and throughout the world by causing lung cancer, cardiovascular disease, asthma attacks, and more
Shore power is an excellent solution to the problem – when it is available. Unfortunately, many short-sighted ports have not installed it, and many cargo ships do not have the capabilities to hook up.
Last month, when the container ship CMA CGM Benjamin Franklin, one of the largest in the world, with a capacity of 18,000 containers, visited the Port of Long Beach, residents and environmental groups were shocked to find that it is not equipped to use shore power while at berth.
Fortunately, Ruben Garcia, owner of Advanced Environmental Group, offered to deploy the Advanced Maritime Emission Control System (AMECS). By reducing dangerous pollutants particulate matter, nitrogen oxides, and sulfur dioxide by over 95 percent, he and the AMECS protected workers, nearby residents, and others from huge amounts of air pollution, and its deadly health effects.
To learn more about Ruben Garcia, AMECS, and port pollution, check out the video above and references below.
Ruben Garcia and the AMECS system
This green entrepreneur was once an undocumented farmworker, Grist
AMECS flier, Advanced Emissions Control
Pollution from ships kills thousands each year, EurActiv
Pollution: Three steps to a green shipping industry, Nature
The Big Source of Pollution That No One Talks About, Mother Jones