Port of Long Beach Joins Alliance to Further Zero-Emissions Efforts

State, city and Port of Long Beach officials gather to announce the formation of the ARCHES partnership to develop the use of green hydrogen fuel in California. Photo: POLB.

The Port of Long Beach in October revealed that it has joined the Alliance for Renewable Clean Hydrogen Energy Systems (ARCHES), a public-private partnership formed to help capture newly available federal funding to assist in developing a robust renewable hydrogen market in California.

The partnership was commemorated Oct. 6 during a launch event at the port’s Administration Building, and was attended by officials from the port, City of Long Beach, the governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development, the University of California Office of the President, labor organizations, and state and local officials.

ARCHES is expected to serve as the lead applicant for California’s bid to win funding for a hydrogen hub under the U.S. Department of Energy’s Regional Clean Hydrogen Hubs (H2Hubs) program.

Funded by the federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the H2Hubs program is one of the largest investments in Department of Energy history, according to the DOE.

“Hydrogen power represents a tremendous opportunity — both for our state and for cities like Long Beach. We’re looking forward to California leading the way through investment in sustainable technology,” said Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia.

“For almost 20 years, the Port of Long Beach has been a leader in sustainable seaport operations,” Long Beach Harbor Commission President Sharon Weissman said. “Partnerships like this have been a key to our success. Green hydrogen is an important fuel for the future of the shipping industry, and as we strive forward on the port’s goals of zero-emissions cargo-handling by 2030 and trucks by 2035.”

“Establishment of a hydrogen hub in California would support achieving our zero emission goals,” Port of Long Beach Executive Director Mario Cordero said. “With $8 billion in federal funding available, we want to ensure we have as much leverage as possible to see that our fair share comes to California, and specifically to the ports.”

“This is a step toward this and accelerating the nation’s clean energy transition,” he added.

In order to tackle greenhouse gases and criteria pollutants, the Port of Long Beach has set a goal of all zero-emissions cargo-handling equipment by 2030 and a zero-emissions drayage truck fleet by 2035. Currently, about 17% of the cargo-handling equipment at the port is electric powered, among the largest such fleets in the United States.

The POLB has also committed $150 million to support zero and near-zero emissions demonstration projects inside the port and on Southern California roads. To date, $70 million in grant funding has been secured to help support these projects.

The Port of Long Beach has been an industry leader in advancing cleaner cargo movement. As a signal of that progress, in September, the POLB announced that a trucking company partner would convert to fully-zero emissions by 2025—10 years before the 2035 goal.

The Sept. 13 announcement was made at 4 Gen Logistics in the Port of Long Beach, where Electrify America is to install 60 public charging stations by the end of 2023 to serve its own fleet of electric trucks, as well as other companies’ trucks.

4 Gen has also committed to buying 41 Volvo and 20 Kenworth electric heavy-duty trucks, and has plans to eventually have a 100-vehicle zero emissions fleet. In addition, 4 Gen’s site in the inland Southern California city of Rialto is to host 30 charging stations.