CO2 Calculator Helps Ports Add Up and Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions 

SAN PEDRO, Calif. — Nov. 29, 2011 — Working collaboratively with technical experts from a handful of other ports worldwide in an effort to combat global warming, the Port of Los Angeles has developed a Carbon Calculator for ports to estimate greenhouse gas emissions from their operations and explore reduction strategies.

Ports can use the free Carbon Calculator to compute the amount of carbon dioxide emissions from sources associated with their operations, including port-specific sources such as cargo handling equipment and harbor craft. Armed with that information, ports can zero in on how best to reduce their carbon footprint through the calculator’s Reduced Emissions Scenarios feature.

“The Carbon Calculator is a powerful tool to help each port chart its own course toward reducing greenhouse gases,” said Port Executive Director Geraldine Knatz, Ph.D., who also serves as President of the International Association of Ports and Harbors (IAPH). “A consistent methodology among ports will help us assess our global impact.”

The Carbon Calculator is a project of the World Ports Climate Initiative (WPCI) – an IAPH collaboration launched in 2008. The initiative is dedicated to identifying and promoting effective, sustainable practices and strategies for ports and harbors to improve air quality while remaining vital economic engines. The Port of Los Angeles, one of 59 WPCI members, has taken the lead in developing the calculator.  Facilitated through the IAPH, more than a dozen port authorities and organizations have been collaborating on this project through the WPCI’s Carbon Footprinting Subgroup.

The “calculator” is a software package that allows ports to estimate existing carbon dioxide emissions from direct, port-owned sources such as fleet vehicles, cranes, harbor craft and cargo handling equipment, and also indirect sources such as electricity purchased for the port-owned buildings and operations. It also serves as a planning tool that ports can use to compute the benefits of replacing or retrofitting equipment with systems or machines that run on green power.

The calculator can be adjusted to measure emissions in the metric or English systems. Planning scenarios can be tailored to a port’s emissions reduction needs or goals.

For a nominal cost of $450, a higher-end version of the WPCI’s free online Carbon Calculator is also available.  This version allows users to save and export data. The one-time-only charge is intended to cover a portion of development costs.

The calculator builds on other WPCI projects, including the Port of Los Angeles-lead Carbon Footprinting for Ports Guidance Document, a resource for ports seeking to develop or improve their greenhouse gas inventories. Future projects under consideration include a similar calculator for terminal operations and a goods movement calculator to estimate greenhouse gas emissions of cargo from point of origin to point of delivery.

Like other WPCI projects, the Carbon Calculator also symbolizes the international commitment among IAPH members to share best environmental practices. “A handful of major ports have invested significant time and money in running cleaner operations,” said Fer Van De Laar, Director of WPCI and Managing Director of IAPH. “They are sharing that knowledge and experience with their colleagues for the health and welfare of the global community.”

About the International Association of Ports and Harbors

Founded in 1955, the International Association of Ports and Harbors (IAPH) is a nonprofit global alliance of roughly 200 ports and 150 maritime companies and institutes representing about 90 countries. The IAPH is dedicated to fostering cooperation among ports and harbors and promoting the vital role they play in creating a peaceful, more prosperous world. Based in Tokyo and recognized as the only voice speaking for ports around the globe, the IAPH has Consultative NGO Status from the United Nations and is active in developing international trade policy. Member ports handle about 80 percent of world container traffic and more than 60 percent of all international maritime trade.

About the Port of Los Angeles

The Port of Los Angeles is America’s premier port and has a strong commitment to developing innovative, strategic and sustainable operations that benefit the economy as well as the quality of life for the region and the nation it serves. As the leading seaport in North America in terms of shipping container volume and cargo value, the Port generates more than 830,000 regional jobs and $35 billion in annual wages and tax revenues. A proprietary department of the City of Los Angeles, the Port is self-supporting and does not receive taxpayer dollars.

The Port of Los Angeles – A cleaner port. A brighter future.