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Assessment of Energy and Sustainability Opportunities for a U.S. Gulf Coast Seaport.


Photo by Zbynek Burival

Why EcoLogix Group was engaged:

A seaport client was interested in evaluating its energy usage toward the end of controlling and reducing its energy costs and improving its long-term sustainability. The port agency had already evaluated its headquarters building and wanted to evaluate energy usage at three prime marine terminals. The port spends several million dollars per year on electricity, and an equal or greater amount on gasoline and diesel. Significant cargo business growth is likely at the port and thus the operating cost for energy will likely increase. In recognition of this, the client wanted to identify energy efficiency and sustainability improvement opportunities.


How EcoLogix Group Responded:

EcoLogix Group assembled a team that identified and evaluated the sources of energy usage on the three selected marine terminals. To better manage future operating costs and to advance the port’s strategic objective of being an environmental leader, the team recommended increased electrification of cargo handling equipment, and use of renewable energy sources. A roadmap was developed to phase in the electric equipment including installation of all necessary electrical infrastructure within 5 years. This allows the capital cost of electrification to be planned over a few years. The cargo handling equipment to be converted includes the rubber tired gantry cranes, terminal tractors and smaller container handling equipment. It was also recommended that the port aim toward an automated container terminal in the next 10 plus years. The recommendation to pursue renewable energy including undertaking a solar photovoltaic demonstration project, obtaining bids for a Power Purchasing Agreement (PPA) to evaluate real costs of such, and further evaluation and consideration of a Microgrid to both control costs and improve resiliency.


Outcome:     

The client is able to assess which high-level recommendations best align with its goals and begin to program resources to pursue the selected projects.


LEAD:          

Kathy Broadwater Principal
kbroadwater@ecologixgroup.comSeaport and Maritime Practice Leader