Maritime risk management organization RightShip and the Australian Marine Environment Protection Association (AUSMEPA) have developed a Maritime Emissions Portal (MEP) that will provide emissions inventory data to ports around the world. The product has been tested with the Pilbara Ports Authority.
The development of the new portal comes after RightShip won a $250,000 Google Impact Challenge Grant in 2016.
Now available for commercial use, the MEP has been designed as a tool to support port operators to better and more accurately understand ship-based emissions and based on that evidence identify opportunities to develop management strategies.
Specifically, by combining automatic identification system (AIS) movement data and RightShip’s vessel insight data, the MEP estimates ship-sourced emissions at specific ports and provides heatmap indications of hotspots and opportunities to reduce environmental impact.
Using industry best practice guidelines from groups including the US EPA, California Air Resources Board (CARB) and the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), the tool is the first of its kind and can monitor all vessel types including ocean-going vessels, OSVs, and tugboats; as well as all operating modes: anchorage, transiting, manoeuvring and hotelling, according to RightShip.
As explained, the digital tool enables ports to better understand and assess their emissions inventory and local air quality and then to identify opportunities for management strategies via the produced heatmaps. Port authorities can use several filters including ship type, points of interest, vessel age and emissions type to develop a clear view of vessel activity while in port.
“There is a real opportunity for port operators, through use of the MEP, to more accurately understand the ship-based emissions profile within their port areas and to also understand the extent to which ship sourced emissions are contributing to total air shed emissions for the area,” Kris Fumberger, Global Sustainability Manager, RightShip, commented.
“With the support of Google and our AUSMEPA partnership, RightShip is pleased to have successfully tested this product with the Pilbara Port Authority. We are now confident this tool can be delivered to any port seeking to monitor and reduce its emissions.”
“We’ve spent several years developing this interactive portal which allows port environment managers to look at all the emissions from ocean-going vessels, OSVs and tugboats. They can log in, get all of their emissions data and identify opportunities for better environmental protection,” Fumberger further said.
Roger Johnston, CEO of Pilbara Ports Authority, said working with RightShip to develop the MEP had provided a clear insight into the port’s marine emissions profile.
“The pilot study modelled the financial year 2018/2019 which has allowed us to compare the modelled outputs of the MEP with the collected data from that period. This provided the team with the ability to validate the process and we are continuing to test this outcome.”
“The relationship will now continue to extend the MEP to PPA’s other ports within the Pilbara region of Western Australia. Early indications are that the MEP will be a useful tool for both port authorities and port operators to better understand shipping emissions and therefore consider management opportunities to address these emissions in balance with land-based sources,” Johnston noted.
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