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Long Beach, Rotterdam Sign Environmental Pact

Two of the largest U.S., European seaports agree to "green" accord

April 3, 2008

ROTTERDAM, Netherlands -- Officials from the Port of Long Beach and the Port of Rotterdam Authority, two of the world's most environmentally friendly seaports, have signed a comprehensive environmental exchange agreement today that will help push "green" practices and technologies even further at the two ports.

"The Port of Rotterdam understands Long Beach's commitment to improving air quality," said Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster in Rotterdam on a trade mission with port officials.  "This will strengthen the partnership between two seaports viewed as international leaders for a cleaner environment."

The Port of Long Beach pioneered environmental stewardship among American seaports with its award-winning Green Port Policy and its clean-air partnership, the Clean Air Action Plan. The Port of Rotterdam is recognized as a European leader for its use of cleaner technologies and efficient port practices that minimize environmental impacts.

"We look forward to sharing our environmental efforts with ports around the world," said Port of Rotterdam CEO Hans Smits.  "We are impressed with what the Port of Long Beach has done."

Under the comprehensive exchange agreement, or Memorandum of Understanding signed Tuesday, April 1, 2008, the ports of Long Beach and Rotterdam will collaborate on environmental issues such as marine wildlife, air quality, soils and sediments, water quality, sustainability and community engagement.

The accord covers the exchange of technical information on improving air quality, the establishment of joint delegations to study port emissions and pollutants, as well as the ongoing development of control measures and best practices surrounding port and urban sustainability policies.

"Through this agreement the ports of Long Beach and Rotterdam will work together to advance the best environmental seaport practices and technologies on both continents," said Long Beach Harbor Commission President Mario Cordero.

The Port of Long Beach and the Port of Rotterdam Authority are among the most respected environmental port stewards. The Port of Long Beach earned the American Association of Port Authorities' top environmental award, the Comprehensive Environmental Management Award of Excellence for its Green Port Policy in 2006 and for the Clean Air Action Plan in 2007.

Mayor Foster and Commission President Cordero are heading a trade delegation that includes Commissioner Sramek, Port Executive Director Richard D. Steinke, Executive Officer to the Board Alex Cherin and Trade Relations Director Don Snyder.

The delegation is also meeting with multiple European shipping companies that use the Port of Long Beach to discuss the Port's latest environmental initiatives under the Green Port Policy and Clean Air Action Plan.

In 2007, the Port signed a similar Memorandum of Understanding environmental agreement with Port of Shenzhen terminal operator Yantian International Container Terminals that was the first comprehensive environmental exchange agreement between two global seaports.

The Port's current trade mission aims to expand that network to better share best environmental practices, programs and technical information with other environmentally friendly seaports throughout the world.

The Port of Long Beach is the second busiest seaport in the United States and part of the fifth busiest port complex in the world. Rotterdam is the busiest seaport in Europe.

 

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