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“K Line” Retrofitting Five Ships for Shore-side Power

Ocean Carrier Embracing ‘Cold Ironing” to Improve Air Quality

June 11, 2007

TOKYO – Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster announced after meetings with K-Line, a large Japanese Ocean carrier, that the company has nearly completed the retrofits of five vessels – including the "Long Beach Bridge" – in order to plug into shore-side electricity at the Port of Long Beach and improve air quality.

"We are pleased to see that "K" Line is moving so quickly to help us curb air pollution," said Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster in Japan on a trade mission with members of the Port of Long Beach’s Board of Commissioners. "The cooperation of our partner shipping lines is critical to improving air quality at the Port."

The Port and "K" Line agreed to an historic "green" lease agreement last year that will transform "K" Line’s International Transportation Service facility, one of Long Beach’s largest container terminals into the most environmentally friendly facility at the Port. Guided by the Green Port Policy environmental ethic, the Port is planning more than $600 million in improvements to the ITS facility including the construction of a new deep-water berth powered with shore-side electricity to be ready next year.

"K" Line is retrofitting five of its vessels to use the "cold ironing berth": Chicago Bridge, Rotterdam Bridge, Genoa Bridge, Shanghai Bridge and Long Beach Bridge.

"We are very proud of K-Lines efforts to protect the environment and improve air quality," added Mayor Foster. "We have had an extremely successful relationship with K-Line for more than 20 years, and we are happy that they are a "green" tenant and a Green Flag carrier."

"Our Green Flag carriers are improving air quality by voluntarily slowing to an optimal ‘clean’ speed," said Harbor Commissioner Dr. Mike Walter. "One of the most gratifying experiences of our trade mission so far is the positive reinforcement and commitment to our Clean Air Action Plan. ’K’ Line was among the best of the best."

K" Line vessels made 345 callings at Port of Long Beach in 2006, with a 99.13% compliance rate -- the highest among the carriers with more than 200 calls during 2006. "K" Line, which was founded in 1919, is one of the world’s leading shipping lines and a pioneer in on-dock rail yard operations in the United States. 

Mayor Foster and Dr. Mike Walter are currently leading a delegation from Long Beach which includes Port Executive Director Richard Steinke, Managing Director Chris Lytle, Executive Officer to the Board of Harbor Commissioners Gus Hein, Trade Relations Director Don Snyder, and Protocol Officer Diane Jacobus. The delegation will be joined in Hong Kong by Harbor Commission President, James Hankla and Harbor Commission Vice-President, Mario Cordero.

The Port of Long Beach is one of the world’s premier seaports, a leading gateway for U.S.-Asia trade, a pioneer in goods movement, a trailblazer as an environmental steward and a committed community partner.

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