The Port of Los Angeles is taking on a first-of-its-kind project that could mean big things in the world of renewable energy. America’s largest port is building the world’s first marine terminal that will be able to completely power itself using only renewable sources.
The Green Omni Terminal represents what one project partner calls “a Wright Brothers moment.” Once the $26.6-million project is completed, it will be able to run completely off the grid in the event of an earthquake or other natural disaster, thanks to a 1-megawatt solar panel system. The Green Omni Terminal would be able to bring in emergency supplies and equipment, supply power to southern California and even serve as a base for the military.
The new terminal will also have zero-emission semi trucks and will feature electric tractors, forklifts and other cargo handling equipment. Project leaders say Green Omni is expected to cut greenhouse gases by more than 3,200 tons per year and that the clean air gains from the entire terminal will be the equivalent of taking about 14,000 cars off the road. The terminal is projected to be fully online by the end of 2016.
An undertaking like the Green Omni Terminal is about impacting more than just one area of the country. Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti says the new terminal will “begin a new era for global shipping where we can eliminate emissions as we power our economy ahead.” Garcetti also stated that he has a city-wide goal of increasing the number of cargo-moving operations that are zero-emission to 15 percent by 2025.