Is it possible to help the environmental impact in Container Terminals?

The environmental impact is a reality that worries citizens around the world and occupies researchers in search of solutions to curb climate change. Thanks to technological innovations, there is hope to stop the accelerated deterioration of our planet.

For many years, there has been talked of the urgency and seriousness with which action should be taken at a global level to protect and care for what has been the home of humanity for more than 4,000 million years.

Taking this reality to the shipping industry, container terminal performance needs to be improved to make it more competitive and productive while becoming more sustainable.

The shipping industry is one of the world’s largest contaminators. Maritime transport emits around 940 million tonnes of CO2 annually and is responsible for 2.5% of global greenhouse gas emissions. Port terminals only emit a fraction of this while receiving, stacking, and delivering containers, and estimates range from 12.7 to 14.5 million tonnes per year.

New technologies have led to more sustainable methodologies, better stewardship of our natural resources, and conversion to solar and renewable energy sources. And these have been shown to have an enormous positive impact on the environment. We are seeing how Artificial Intelligence and new technologies are powerful allies to face climatic emergencies through different actions, such as:

  • Electric vehicles: working with motors that use electrical energy, which they accumulate in their rechargeable batteries.
  • Use of LED lighting: A regular 100-watt bulb emits three kilos of carbon dioxide in 100 hours. When it is still «alive,» but once discarded, the small amounts of mercury and argon go directly into the environment because glass breaks easily.
  • Bioenergy with CO2 capture technology: This method uses vegetation to capture CO2 and convert it into biomass, which can be used as an energy source.
  • Solar panels: These devices capture the energy of solar radiation, converting it into heat or electricity.

A recent example is APM Terminals, which celebrated a new «Go Green» edition a few weeks ago, making different actions to make the port business increasingly sustainable.

One of the actions taken by the company was a solar panel project that achieved 5,1% of the terminal’s electricity consumption now coming from the sun. Thanks to the solar panels installed on its car park, it is possible to provide the power consumed by the terminal’s fleet of electric vehicles. Also, following its green commitment, the company has changed to LED lighting on its cranes, which led to a 70% reduction in energy consumption.

Solar panels at APM Terminal car park.

At eYARD, we want to support sustainability’s vital role in the container terminals industry. That is why we offer to implement the latest AI technologies to increase cost-efficiency and reduce energy use and eco-impact considerably. We do it through workflow automation, yard optimization, and terminal operations simulation.

We are committed to sustainability and want to make global trade smarter, safer, and more sustainable through the most outstanding solutions.

If you are interested in reducing CO2 emissions at your container terminal, contact us!