The head of the Pacific Merchant Shipping Association is expressing concerns that a highly impacted electrical grid could adversely affect power supply to California’s green-driven ports and the supply chain.
PMSA President John McLaurin raised his concerns following the recent release of a report by engineering consultancy Moffatt and Nichol report that looks at California’s energy grid needs for vessels and the cargo-moving landside equipment.
There’s been a years-long push to move the supply chain to zero-emission technologies by 2035, but the growing power demand could challenge the state’s ability to provide ports the energy they need to move cargo.
“This report confirms our belief that the zero-emission goal of 2035 will require complex planning, substantial funding and a level of cooperation and coordination by a myriad of state and local agencies for a massive public works project that has never been undertaken in California,” McLaurin said.
The report states that California needs to address several challenges, including making sure there’s enough energy to power electric vehicles and other equipment during marine terminal times — especially at peak hours, improving the energy infrastructure to support a more reliable electrical grid, and having enough backup power in case of an emergency.
“As federal and state elected officials consider infrastructure improvements, California public officials need to review state energy and environmental policies to ensure that California jobs and businesses are not put at risk,” said McLaurin.
The full Moffatt & Nichol report can be read online at https://www.pmsaship.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/Electrification-of-California-Ports-FINAL-June-2021-Signed.pdf.