Branson Praises Canadian Ports Rewarding Fuel-efficient Vessels

Tuesday January 28, 2014

British billionaire Sir Richard Branson says two Canadian ports that offer lower dues for fuel-efficient vessels should serve as a model for other ports worldwide, the Globe and Mail reports.

Port Metro Vancouver and the Prince Rupert Port Authority, both in British Columbia, use greenhouse gas emission ratings from A to G to allow less-polluting ships to qualify for financial incentives.

The rating system was developed by marine consultant RightShip and Carbon War Room, a non-profit group that Sir Branson founded to fight climate change caused by carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

"These Canadian ports are the very first ports in the world to work with us on this, and it's just great," Sir Branson said.

"We can now use this as an example and roll it out around the rest of the world."

He added that ports, ship owners, and charterers can all push the shipping industry to be more environmentally friendly.

"We're trying to get retailers to make sure they use clean ships to transport their goods," he said.

"And we're then trying to get ports to give people who invest in clean ships some benefits for that."

Port Metro Vancouver provided total discounts of $1.1 million last year, while Prince Rupert plans to give out $100,000 in discounts in 2014.

The Vancouver port is also part of an initiative with two U.S. ports to reduce diesel emissions on the North American West Coast and a project to move toward liquefied natural gas (LNG) bunkering in Canada.