UK clean air framework strategy
The Joint Air Quality Unit at the UK's Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has set out its plans to tackle air quality in its ‘Clean Air Zone Framework’ strategy which will include port zones.
The framework outlines approaches for facilitating clean air within a business environment, raising awareness and reducing vehicle mileage of businesses and others using ports and their facilities.
On the whole, it's a strategy being welcomed by UK ports.
A spokesperson for Associated British Ports (ABP) told GreenPort: “We support the vision outlined by Defra of promoting modern, cleaner technologies."
"At ABP we are in the middle of a £1 billion investment programme which has delivered upgraded cranes, vehicles and other port equipment utilising cleaner technology with significantly reduced emissions. We are also in the process of investing in 27 renewable energy schemes at locations across our 21 ports, producing sustainable energy for port operations and the National Grid.”
Defra acknowledges that the approach for addressing emissions will depend on the circumstances involved, but local authorities are expected to work closely with port operators to monitor and discuss what action should be taken as proposals are developed and implemented. Both parties are also expected to work together to tackle other significant sources of emissions in the development of a zone.
Under the proposed new framework, green initiatives may include connecting ships to an onshore electricity supply, developing timetabled delivery for vehicles, encouraging vehicles to meet the latest European standards and exploration of retrofitting options for specialist machinery.