Image courtesy of the Port of Long Beach.
On Tuesday, the Port of Long Beach (POLB) announced the completion of an environmental impact report (EIR) for the Mitsubishi Cement Facility Modification Project, a proposed expansion of an unused, existing cement warehouse.
“What the project is meant to do is improve the facility and enlarge the storage space,” with the hope of minimizing the number of ships waiting in line to load and unload, POLB Media Relations Specialist Lee Peterson said. He said the project hasn’t been controversial and won’t be one of the largest facilities in the Port.
“As the economy improves, the company sees the demand for cement increasing,” Peterson said, adding that the facility is meant to be a part of meeting the renewed cement demand.
Conducting an EIR is part of the Port’s construction and renovation process, an evaluation that Peterson said is meant to look at every angle to make the project more environmentally friendly and reduce carbon emissions.
The document sets out a plan for ships to use a form of emission control when docked, to obtain clean “electrical power” from the docks. If the ships can’t plug themselves in to the dock, Peterson said a device will capture and treat the emissions emanating from the ship's smokestack. The document also requires all cars entering the facility to be 2010 models or newer, along with the usual Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) guidelines that are updated every year.
The Port’s Board of Harbor Commissioners will consider approval of the final EIR at its regular meeting on May 11. If the EIR is approved, Mitsubishi will need to sign a new lease with the Port that accounts for its use of additional space.
“If we’re going to have trucks treading, we might as well mitigate the damage and make for cleaner trucks,” Peterson said. “It gives us a chance to modernize one of our terminals here.”
This article was updated on 4/29/15 at 5:50PM with additional information about the device set to treat the ship's smoke emissions at the Port, detailing its treatment of the smoke in addition to its capturing and "measurement" smoke.