Jaxport wins $23.5 million in federal funding for emission reduction projects

Florida-based Jacksonville Port Authority (Jaxport) has won a $23.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation which is intended for port infrastructure projects aimed at reducing emissions.

 The Jaxport Express project is a $47 million public-private partnership by Jaxport and two of its port tenants, SSA Jacksonville and Crowley. The grant will support sustainability initiatives at the port’s Blount Island and Talleyrand marine terminals.

The $31.2 million is intended for purchasing new eco-friendly cargo handling equipment for the SSA Jacksonville Container Terminal (JCT) at Blount Island, including six hybrid-electric rubber-tired gantry (RTG) cranes, as well as nearly a dozen units of low- and zero-emission container top picks, forklifts, and related charging infrastructure.

The initiative is supported by more than $370 million in ongoing investment by JAXPORT and SSA to modernize the SSA JCT, including a $20 million grant awarded by MARAD in 2019. SSA is also investing more than $40 million for the addition of three eco-friendly container cranes that are set to arrive at JAXPORT in February 2023.

Additionally, $14.6 million will be spent at Crowley’s JAXPORT Talleyrand Terminal for the addition of nearly two dozen zero-emissions equipment for cargo handling, including specialty yard tractors and forklifts, as well as related charging stations for Crowley’s supply chain services. The grant also supports the addition of 160 refrigerated cargo charging stations (reefer plugs).

“Jaxport Express is a great example of the partnership we need to reach our sustainability commitments and be even more efficient in our supply chain operations and services,” said Brett Bennett, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Crowley Logistics.

“As we continue our journey to reach net-zero emissions, moving to an electric fleet and more efficient terminal equipment will help us make a major impact in the Jacksonville community, where we already utilize lower emission fuels, and be leaders in our industry. We appreciate the support from the U.S. Department of Transportation, MARAD and JAXPORT and look forward to collaborating to reach our shared goal of a cleaner, decarbonized world.”

Through the project, Jaxport will spend $1 million to support port-wide electrification through the development of a Port and Maritime Electrification Plan. The project includes initiatives to develop and implement workforce development programs to establish the labor pool necessary to maintain and operate the equipment and support future widespread deployment of eco-friendly technologies.

The grant is part of $703 million financing rolled out by the U.S. Department of Transportation to fund 41 projects in 22 states. The funding will benefit coastal seaports, Great Lakes ports, and inland river ports, helping improve supply chain reliability through increased port capacity and resilience, more efficient operations, reduced port emissions, and new workforce opportunities, DOT said.

More than $150 million in awards include a focus on the electrification of port equipment to reduce emissions and improve air quality. The awards also include nearly $100 million for port projects that will advance offshore wind deployment – in support of Biden’s goal of deploying 30 gigawatts of offshore wind by 2030. 

One of the beneficiaries of the funding is also the Port of Long Beach which won $30.1 million for a clean air project. Some of the other sustainability projects also include investments at the Kapalama Container Terminal in Honolulu, Hawaii, worth $47.3 million. The project will include upgrades to electrified ship-to-shore cranes, acquisition of new equipment, and installation of solar panels on terminal buildings, as well as the development of a smart gate, among other things.

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