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Port Invests in Zero-Emission Cargo Handlers

December 14, 2023

  • Image courtesy Port of Long Beach
  • Image courtesy Port of Long Beach
  • Image courtesy Port of Long Beach

A fleet of 33 new human-operated, zero-emissions battery-electric yard tractors were unveiled last week at a Port of Long Beach container terminal where the cargo-handling machines have replaced traditional gasoline and diesel-powered models.

The deployment – the largest of its kind on the West Coast – was led by terminal operator SSA Terminals LLC, a joint venture between SSA Marine and Matson Navigation Company. It is partially funded by a $50 million grant from the California Air Resources Board for the Sustainable Terminals Accelerating Regional Transformation, or START project, a sweeping, transformative demonstration of a near-zero and zero-emissions supply chain. 

The new machines increase the percentage of zero-emissions equipment being used at the Port of Long Beach to approximately 20%. The percentage will continue to increase as more zero-emissions equipment is rolled out at the Port. This equipment also accelerates Pier C’s progress toward zero-emissions operations, a process that will continue further as SSA Terminals works to integrate zero-emissions, human-driven top handlers.

The equipment is capable of running a two-shift operation with a once-per-day opportunity charge. Both the Port and SSA Terminals worked with
Southern California Edison to bring the project to fruition. SCE’s Charge Ready Transport program supports heavy duty electrification projects and was vital to the success of the project.

Image courtesy Port of Long Beach

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