Hong Kong Tatler - - Features -

An al­ter­na­tive to switch­ing fuel is for ships to plug into on­shore power while berthed so en­gines can be switched off. The US state of Cal­i­for­nia, for in­stance, re­quires 50 per cent of an op­er­a­tor’s ves­sels docked in its wa­ters to con­nect to on­shore power. Tung says newer con­tainer ships are ca­pa­ble of plug­ging in, but many ports and ter­mi­nals are still grap­pling with in­fra­struc­ture chal­lenges, power avail­abil­ity and safety is­sues. Loh doesn’t see on­shore power as a re­al­is­tic so­lu­tion. “It’s a much more com­pli­cated op­tion,” she says. “Of course it’s cleaner, but you need a huge in­fra­struc­ture pro­gramme to get the ter­mi­nals to in­stall the equip­ment, and for all the ships to in­tro­duce ca­pa­bil­i­ties, too, be­fore it can work. Fuel switch­ing at berth is the fastest way to re­duce the largest amount of pol­lu­tion.”

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