California Approves New Mobile Scrubbing Technology

by Ship & Bunker News Team
Monday October 26, 2015

The California Air Resource Board (CARB) has approved the use of an Advanced Environmental Group, LLC (AEG) exhaust gas scrubber alternative to shore power, known as the Advanced Maritime Emissions Control System (AMECS), says the Port of Long Beach (PoLB).

The technology is said to use specialised barges to attach scrubbers to the exhaust ports of container ships, and provides a retrofit-free option - as opposed to modifications needed to plug in to shore power - in order to meet the state's at-berth environmental regulations.

AMECS is reported to have been approved for "simultaneous emission capture" from two exhaust stacks of a single ship.

"AMECS is a game-changer in the fields of emission control and air quality. Multiple AMECS units can remove thousands of tons of pollutants each year," explained AEG's president, Ruben Garcia.

"These mobile barge-mounted systems use patented technology to attach to the auxiliary exhaust stacks of nearly any vessel entering port – at-berth or at-anchor – eliminating the need for expensive ship retrofits, and providing the public with cleaner air."

Independent test results are reported to have shown a 90 percent to 99 percent reduction in particulate matter (PM), nitrous oxides (NOx), and sulfur dioxides (SO2) emissions contained in diesel exhaust.

As Ship & Bunker previously reported, PoLB provided $2.1 million to the product during its testing phase in 2013.

"We're thrilled any time we can find more tools to reduce emissions and continue to improve community health," said Lori Ann Guzmán, President of the Port of Long Beach's Board of Harbor Commissioners.

"That's why we fund projects like the demonstration and testing of these new technologies, through our Technology Advancement Program.

"We've made a lot of progress in reducing air pollution, and we are nurturing new technologies like these to help us do even more."

In January, the California Environmental Protection Agency (CEPA) announced that its Air Resources Board (ARB) had fined four shippers a combined $146,719 for failing to adhere to the state's marine fuel regulations.