Maximizing shipping efficiencies to reduce fuel emissions over existing operations

The current channel depth does not allow crude carriers to depart fully loaded from the Port. As a result, Very Large Crude Carriers (VLCCs) either:

  • Enter the Port and depart lightly loaded along with other, smaller ships that temporarily hold and move additional cargo or,
  • Remain offshore while smaller tankers enter the Port, load cargo, then exit the Port.

In either scenario, smaller ships must transfer their cargo to the larger VLCC in open water. This process is known as reverse lightering—significantly increasing the potential for collisions, oil spills, or fires. It also leads to increased air emissions from multiple ships completing a job that could be done by only one ship in less time.

Channel deepening would reduce adverse environmental and safety impacts from reverse lightering activities.

Reverse Lightering
Increases emissions overall due to number of vessels required and crude transfer outside of Port where vapors are not captured.

Elimination of Reverse Lightering
Reduced emissions overall due to reduction in number of vessels required and elimination of crude transfer outside of Port.