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MPA first port in SE Asia to offer discounts to eco-friendly ships

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GOA : The Mormugao Port Authority (MPA) on Tuesday evening created history by being the first port in the country and the Southeast Asian region to offer discounts to environment-friendly ships under the ‘Harit Shreya Scheme’.

The MPA Chairman along with other officials visited the ship ‘MV August Oldendorff’ docked at Berth No 5 and met the captain of the ship and launched the scheme. The MPA officials even offered a memento to the captain and chief engineer of the ship.

Speaking to reporters, MPA Chairman Dr N Vinodkumar said the MPA wanted to have eco-friendly ships coming to the port. “In the policies issued by the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways, we have a Harit Sagar programme which speaks of giving discounts to eco-friendly vessels,” said Dr Vinodkumar.

“We have come up with an initiative where we will check the Environment Sensitivity Index (ESI) scores of ships given to them by the International Association of Ports and Harbours. The ESI scores range from 0-100 and most ports give discounts to vessels with the ESI score above 30.

“We are now giving certain discounts on port dues to ships with high ESI scores under the green credit Harit Shreya Scheme. The ship ‘MV August Oldendorff’ is the first ship with a high ESI score after the introduction of the scheme and we are happy to launch this scheme which will be extended to all the shops throughout the year. We will also review to see if the discounts given are good enough to attract more eco-friendly vessels in the port,” said Dr Vinodkumar.

The MPA chairman said ‘MV August Oldendorff’ had a good ESI score of 41, depicting that greenhouse gas emission is very low.

“We are now offering them discounts in port dues and recognising their sustainability. We need to capture the data of ESI scores of the ships calling at this port which was not being done earlier. We need to see that more such environment-friendly ships come to the port,” said Dr Vinodkumar.

He informed the International Association of Ports and Harbours displays on its website a number of ports which give discounts on the basis of ESI scores. “We realised that there are no such ports in India or Southeast Asia and we are the first port in the Southeast Asian region to give such a discount on the basis of the ESI score,” said Dr Vinodkumar.

“Economic activity has to continue and cannot be stopped but we can always ensure that the impact on the environment is minimal. We expect many more such ships with high ESI scores coming to the port. Presently, we are also going towards setting up a solar energy plant and have taken initiatives to plant 5,000 saplings to increase the green cover in the port. We are also planning to extend the green credit score to trucks and other vehicles entering the port,” he added.

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