Alternative Maritime Power™, or “AMP™,” is a one-of-a-kind air quality program that focuses on reducing emissions from container vessels docked at the Port of Los Angeles. Instead of running on diesel power while at berth, AMP-equipped ships “plug in” to shore side electrical power – literally an alternative power source for oceangoing vessels.
AMP technology is often referred to as “cold ironing” and has been used for many years on naval vessels, Baltic ferries and cruise ships operating in Alaska. The Port of Los Angeles was the first Port in the world to use AMP technology for in-service container ships.
Status of AMP™ for Container Ships
On June 21, 2004, the Port of Los Angeles and China Shipping Container Line announced the grand opening of the West Basin Container Terminal at Berth 100, the first container terminal in the world to use Alternative Maritime Power. Nearly two months later on August 9, the Port welcomed the world’s first container vessel to be built with AMP specifications already in mind, shipping line NYK’s NYK Atlas. Additional terminals that are “plug in” ready include Yusen Terminal at berth 214 (2006), Evergreen’s Sea Side Terminal at berth 230 (2010), and the Cruise Terminal at berths 92 and 93A (2011).
The California Air Resources Board (CARB) adopted a regulation in December 2007 to reduce emissions from diesel auxiliary engines on ships while at-berth for container, cruise and reefer vessels. The regulation requires that auxiliary diesel engines be shut down (i.e., use grid-based power) for specified percentages of fleet visits. In addition the fleet’s at-berth auxiliary engine power generation (kW-hrs) must be reduced by the same percentages. As an alternative, vessel operators may employ any combination of technologies to achieve equivalent reductions. Specifically, by 2014, vessel operators relying on shore power are required to shut down their auxiliary engines at-berth for 50 percent of the fleet’s vessel visits and also reduce their onboard auxiliary engine power generation by 50 percent. The specified percentages will increase to 70 percent in 2017 and 80 percent in 2020. For vessel operators choosing the emission reduction equivalency alternative, the regulation requires a 10 percent reduction in OGV hotelling emissions starting in 2010 increasing in stringency to an 80 percent reduction by 2020.
The Harbor Department is scheduled to complete a total of twenty-four AMP installations for shipping lines to prepare for compliance with the CARB shore power regulation that begins on January 1, 2014 at all major container terminals.
Status of AMP™ for Cruise Ships
On February 24, 2011, the Port of Los Angeles became the first port worldwide to provide AMP to three separate cruise lines. Disney Cruise Line, Princess Cruises and Norwegian Cruise Line have all taken advantage of unique “AMP Mobile” technology developed specifically for the World Cruise Center.
The World Cruise Center is also the only port where two cruise ships can be connected simultaneously. Cruise ships utilize either 6.6 kilovolts (kV) or 11 kV electrical power distribution systems to plug into shore side power; the Port of Los Angeles can now accommodate either. Currently the power demand of the cruise ships calling the Port of Los Angeles is anywhere between 8 to 13 megawatts of power. The Port’s AMP system installed at the World Cruise Center is capable of delivering up to 40 megawatts of power, with 20 megawatts of power delivery capacity to each of the two different ships.
A full ship "plug in"
of Alternative Maritime Power™
Xin Yang Zhou, China Shipping's
first AMP™ vessel to call at the
Port, and the world's first AMP™
NYK Atlas is NYK's and the
world's first, brand new AMP™
Xin Nan Tong, China Shipping's
second AMP™ vessel to call
at the Port of Los Angeles