Port Metro Vancouver Launches Blue Circle Award for Shipping

New award honours cleanest port-users

VANCOUVER, Aug. 3 /CNW/ - Port Metro Vancouver is launching its new Blue Circle Award for the EcoAction Program for Shipping, a user-friendly financial incentive for shipping lines that reduce emissions of their ocean-going vessels. A global leader in Port sustainability, Port Metro Vancouver is committed to working with its customers and industry stakeholders to achieve reduced air emissions and a smaller carbon footprint.

"Long-term sustainability is a top priority for Port Metro Vancouver," said Robin Silvester, President and Chief Executive Officer of Port Metro Vancouver. "Our EcoAction Program for Shipping is a unique way of encouraging cleaner ships to our gateway. The Blue Circle Award is in recognition of the EcoAction program participants' commitment to environmental stewardship," he said.

Port Metro Vancouver emissions reduction programs have received international acclaim, having been awarded the Globe 2010 ecoFreight Award for Sustainable Transportation. The Port has also been credited for its Air Action Program, having been nominated for the International Sustainable Shipping Award. The Port has also brought shore power to Canada Place making 2010 the first eco-friendly cruise season.

Under the EcoAction Program for Shipping, formerly known as the differentiated harbour dues program, vessels that qualify will be eligible to receive the newly established Blue Circle Award, a recognition reserved for only the highest emissions reduction achievements. The Blue Circle Awards honour gold, silver or bronze, ratings based on efforts to reduce air emissions, depending on the quality of fuel used and overall emission reductions. Vessel operators can apply for the program at each call or provide an annual declaration for their vessels.

"I am pleased to acknowledge the ongoing efforts of Port Metro Vancouver as they provide incentives for industry to reduce their carbon footprint and air emissions," said the Honourable John Yap, Minister of State for Climate Action. "Greening our tourism industry is an important step in the right direction and is good news for Vancouver, and all Port users and I applaud the efforts of the shipping lines being honoured today with the Blue Circle Award."

By awarding the Blue Circle Award, Port Metro Vancouver acknowledges industry commitment to Port sustainability. This year's recipients are:

    
           - Holland America Line
           - Hapag-Lloyd (Canada) Inc.
           - "K" Line Canada Ltd.
           - Maersk Canada Inc.
           - Princess Cruises
           - Regent Cruise Line
           - Seaboard International Shipping Company Limited
           - SilverSea Cruises
           - Westwood Shipping Lines
    

SOURCE Port Metro Vancouver

For further information: For further information: Barbara Joy-Kinsella, Port Metro Vancouver, 604-665-9267

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