This paper addresses common causes of airborne emissions in container ports.Container terminals utilise a wide variety of container handling equipment. This can be divided into horizontal transportation such as straddle and shuttle carriers, terminal tractors and Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs); yard cranes including Automated Stacking Cranes ASC) and Rubber Tyred Gantries (RTG); ShipTo-Shore (STS) cranes; mobile equipment including reachstackers, empty container handlers and forklift trucks, as well as road vehicles operating at the terminal.
The potential for emissions reduction differs substantially between these equipment types. Vessels and road trucks are the most significant sources of air pollution at container ports, but this text primarily addresses container handling equipment, including STS and yard cranes, horizontal transportation as well as mobile equipment.
New developments such as electrification, hybrid technology, energy regeneration, and process automation have significant potential to reduce or even completely eliminate on-site air emissions caused by container handling equipment, but the choice of a horizontal transportation system itself has a major impact on emissions. A terminal concept based on terminal tractors will necessitate a relatively large fleet, as each container needs to be placed on top of the vehicle, while horizontal transportation with straddle or shuttle carriers requires fewer machines to handle the equivalent number of containers.