U.S. Councilman Calls for Shore Power at South Carolina Cruise Terminal

Tuesday April 19, 2016

Charleston, U.S. councilman Mike Seekings is amongst those pressing for shore power to be made available at a $35 million passenger cruise terminal proposed by the South Carolina Ports Authority, local media reports.

In a debate on the matter last week, Seekings said that the technology should be made available in order to prevent emissions from idling ships, and also wants an enforceable cap on the number of cruise liners allowed to call the port, in order to protect "the historic district of the most historic city in North America."

Agreeing with Seekeings, Carrie Agnew, executive director of Charleston Communities for Cruise Control, said that without a legally enforceable limit to cap the number of cruise vessels, there exists "a threat to the very fabric this city where so many of us live, work and love to visit."

However, local resident Erin Mellen who was said to have worked at the terminal for 30 years, commenting on worries over ship emissions, said: "I have been at the terminal for many years all day with cruise ships and I have suffered no ill effects."

Shore power has proven to be a divisive issue of late, particularly in the U.S. where last year the president and CEO of the South Carolina Ports Authority, James Newsome, called it "a last-generation solution at most major ports."

That prompted a number of other ports to jump to the defence of the technology, and public backing for the technology appears to remain.

Last November Seattle residents said extended shore power infrastructure should be "top of the list" of priorities for the Port of Seattle Terminal 5 (T5) modernisation project.