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Climate Action Plan

Among the First U.S. Ports to Adopt a Climate Action Plan

two people inspect environmental installations

Climate Action Plan

In 2013, the Port adopted a Climate Action Plan to provide a long-term vision for sustainability by decreasing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The Port aims to reach a GHG emission reduction of 10% by 2020 by decreasing emissions through transportation and land use, energy conservation and efficiency, alternative energy generation, clean transportation, water conservation, and waste reduction. 

On Track to Meet 2020 Goal

With a 2020 goal to reduce GHG emissions 10% relative to a 2006 baseline, the Port is well on its way to meeting its near-term target. Based on activities which occurred in 2016, GHG emissions have decreased 13% since 2006. Beyond 2020, the Port will need to align long term goals with State GHG reduction targets of a 40% reduction by 2030 and a 80% reduction by 2050. 

  • Green Port Program

    Green Port Program

    A Green Port Program was developed by the Port of San Diego to support the goals of the Green Port Policy that was approved by the Board of Port Commissioners in 2008. The ultimate goal of the program is to achieve long-term environmental, societal and economic benefits through resource conservation, waste reduction and pollution prevention.

    Green Port Program
  • Green Business Network

    Green Business Network

    The Green Business Network is a group of waterfront businesses committed to reducing their environmental footprint through water and energy conservation. Membership is free for tenant businesses, including restaurants, marinas, hotels and attractions. 

    Green Business Network
  • Clean Vehicles

    Clean Vehicles

    The promotion of electric and alternative fueled vehicles is a key initiative in the Port’s Climate Action Plan to reduce emissions and improve air quality. In collaboration with our tenants and regional stakeholders, Port staff have pursued grant opportunities and purchases supporting a variety of initiatives for the electrification of light, medium and heavy-duty vehicles on the Port Waterfront. Initiatives focus on increasing alternative fuels and electric vehicles into the Port’s municipal fleet and freight sector while investing in infrastructure to increase vehicle charging. Expanding opportunities for transit, biking and walking, and programs to reduce vehicle emissions are important components of the Port’s Clean Transportation goals.

  • Vessel Speed Reduction Program

    Vessel Speed Reduction Program

    The Vessel Speed Reduction Program is a voluntary strategy to reduce air pollutants and greenhouse gas emissions from cargo and cruise ships by reducing speeds in the vicinity of San Diego Bay. Studies show that reducing vessel speeds decreases air emissions which ultimately lead to better air quality.

    The Port asks cargo vessel operators entering or leaving San Diego Bay to observe a 12-knot speed limit. For cruise ships, a 15-knot limit is requested. The Vessel Speed Reduction zone extends 20 nautical miles seaward from Point Loma.

    Vessel Speed Reduction Program
  • Shore Power

    Shore Power

    Many cruise ships at B St. Cruise Ship Terminal and Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal plug into shorepower to reduce emissions. Shore power saves consumption of fuel that would otherwise be used to power vessels while berthed, and eliminates the air pollution associated with consumption of that fuel. Currently, 70% of passenger vessel and refrigerated cargo fleets which visit the Port of San Diego are using much cleaner electricity instead of running their diesel engines while at berth. 

  • Clean Truck Program

    Clean Truck Program

    For Truck Owners, Operators, and/or Drivers Accessing the Port of San Diego

    All drayage trucks accessing the Port of San Diego maritime terminals to pick up or drop off cargo must comply with clean air requirements under the State of California’s Drayage Truck Regulation. Drayage trucks are diesel-fueled heavy-duty vehicles that visit California’s ports and rail yards to load, unload or transport cargo, such as containerized, bulk or break-bulk goods. The regulation is a state law that is administered by the California Air Resources Board. The regulation requires that marine terminals and ports track and report all trucks that do not comply with air pollution reduction rules when visiting their facilities.

    Clean Truck Program
  • Tenth Ave Marine Terminal Microgrid

    Tenth Ave Marine Terminal Microgrid

    The Port was awarded a $5 million grant from the California Energy Commission for the installation of a renewable, solar-powered microgrid at the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal, one of the Port’s two marine cargo terminals. Solar photovoltaic panels will power the microgrid, which will also include battery energy storage, efficiency improvements, electrical infrastructure improvements, and a centralized microgrid controller. The microgrid will help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions at the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal, save the Port approximately 60 percent per year on electrical utilities, and enable the operation of critical terminal infrastructure for approximately 12 hours without being connected to the larger electrical grid. 

    The microgrid, which is anticipated to be installed in spring 2020, will provide back-up power to Port-operated facilities, including security infrastructure, lights, offices, and the existing jet fuel storage system, in support of the Port’s role as a Department of Defense Strategic Port. As one of 17 designated U.S. Strategic Ports, the Port stands ready to support military deployment activities.

  • Energy Efficiency

    Energy Efficiency

    In order to meet the Port’s Climate Action Plan goals, energy efficiency continues to be a key initiative in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Projects have included retrofitting existing lighting to more efficient LED technology, educational programs for employees, and conducting energy audits on Port facilities to identify future initiatives. 

    The Port and San Diego Gas & Electric have partnered together to implement energy efficiency through the Port’s Local Government Partnership which provides the Port with annual funds to conduct energy efficiency across Port facilities.