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Biden-⁠Harris Administration Announces Key Infrastructure Funding to Electrify Ports

President Biden’s Investing in America agenda is making America’s ports safer and more reliable, strengthening our supply chains, creating good-paying jobs, improving air quality and public health, and building a zero-emissions shipping future

America’s ports play a central role in our supply chains and affordable goods movement, are important providers of good jobs, and are key to our global competitiveness. To strengthen our supply chains, reduce costs for the American people, and position the U.S. for economic success, the Biden Administration this week announced investments as part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda to make our ports safer, cleaner, more efficient, and more reliable.

Today, thanks to the President’s Inflation Reduction Act, EPA is taking the next step to invest $3 billion to fund zero-emission port equipment and technology and to help ports develop climate action plans to reduce air pollutants, improve air quality and public health in neighboring communities, and advance environmental justice. EPA is also investing another $1 billion to reduce emissions from heavy-duty commercial vehicles, including those that travel in and out of ports.

These investments are just the latest in a string of transformative programs and projects made possible by the Biden-Harris Administration. Together, these investments will create good-paying jobs, strengthen supply chains, improve economic competitiveness, and help combat the climate crisis.

Recognizing the vital role of modern, resilient infrastructure in reducing costs for American families and businesses, President Biden secured an unprecedented $17 billion investments through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to improve the country’s ports and waterways – critical arteries in our supply chains. The Inflation Reduction Act includes another $4 billion with a focus of electrifying port equipment and heavy-duty vehicles.  This historic investment will also play a role in reducing local pollution and climate emissions by limiting congestion and idling as well as by investing in electrification and other low-carbon technologies through programs, including supporting the future of zero emission shipping.

Today’s announcement builds on previous port electrification announcements made by the Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration to improve port efficiency and air quality, reducing local pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. They also complement new proposed vehicle pollution standards that would, if finalized, make trucks cleaner and more efficient and position the United States as a leading force in the clean energy future.

Advancing Environmental Justice

Communities living near ports and other transportation corridors are exposed to toxic pollution which can cause respiratory and cardiovascular harm, especially in children. Cleaner ports and freight vehicles will improve air quality, reducing the pollution burden faced by fence line communities and advancing President Biden’s historic commitment to environmental justice.

The investments announced today deliver on the President’s Justice40 Initiative, which is working to ensure that 40 percent of the overall benefits of federal investments in climate change, clean energy, and other areas flow to disadvantaged communities that are marginalized, underserved, and overburdened by pollution. 

Transforming Port Infrastructure

Last month, the Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration opened applications for the first round of the new reduction of Truck Emissions and Port Facilities Grant Program,  established under President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. The program will reduce emissions from idling trucks at our nation’s ports, which negatively impact air quality in ports and surrounding communities, including children, truck drivers, and port workers. Up to $160 million is currently available for this program.  

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration (MARAD) also recently announced funding making more than $662 million available in FY2023 funding through their Port Infrastructure Development Program (PIDP) .  PIDP investments will modernize our nation’s ports and help strengthen our supply chains for generations to come, helping to reduce shipping time, costs, and ultimately, the costs of goods for the American people. Thanks to the President’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, MARAD provides $2.25 billion over five years for these upgrades impacting our ports all across the country. Many of the funded projects use zero-emission technology to improve port efficiency while eliminating local pollution and cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

Port electrification projects funded with the first year of Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding include:

  • Middle Harbor Terminal Zero Emission Conversion Project in Long Beach, California: The $30 million award will fund the replacement of diesel yard tractors with approximately 60 electric yard tractors, construction of electric equipment charging infrastructure with energy load management software to enhance energy efficiency, and installation of software equipment to streamline cargo-handling operations within the terminal.
  • The JAXPORT EXPRESS Project in  Jacksonville, Florida:  The $23.5 million award includes installation of electrified refrigerated container stacks; procurement of six hybrid-electric rubber-tired gantry cranes procurement of 16 battery-electric forklifts, ten battery-electric yard tractors, and seven Tier 4 diesel top picks; installation of 15 high-power direct current fast charging stations and make-ready stub-outs; and development of a replaceable and scalable plan for transitioning the port and local maritime industry to zero-emission technologies.
  • Terminal 6 Infrastructure Improvements Project in Portland, Oregon: This $24.3 million award will fund replacing electrical components to reduce energy consumption, light spillage, and enable future zero-emission operations.
  • Kapalama Container Terminal Project in Honolulu, Hawaii: The $47.6 million award will fund upgrades to electrified ship-to-shore cranes; acquisition of new equipment and installation of solar panels on terminal buildings that will improve the reliability of port operations; an electrical micro-grid to improve resilience; and, development of a Facility Resiliency Plan and a Terminal Electrification Plan to support additional environmental and resilience improvements in the future.

More at White House WH.gov
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