[Port Hueneme, CA] — It’s official! The Port of Hueneme’s annual Green Marine certification results are out, and the Port was certified in June 2023 with its highest scores ever during the annual Green Marine re-certification process. These high scores are an acknowledgement of the Port of Hueneme’s commitment to leadership in environmental stewardship. Green Marine is the leading voluntary environmental certification program for North America’s maritime industry. Green Marine’s Environmental Port Program scores an applicant against a rigorous set of more than 160 performance indicators in nine categories, including environmental leadership, community impacts, greenhouse gases and air pollutants as well as waste management. The scores an applicant receives are based upon escalating requirements, all of which are predicated on going above and beyond mere compliance with environmental regulations. In addition, the program categories evolve annually and require ongoing year over year improvement to maintain, let alone improve on, an applicant’s score. The Port of Hueneme has been part of this program since 2017 and in addition to the annual re-certification process, there is a third-party onsite program audit every other year of an applicant’s participation. The Port of Hueneme was the first port in California to achieve a Green Marine certification in 2017.
“It is an honor that the Port of Hueneme has kept the lead as one of the highest scoring Ports in California for environmental action and has become re-certified by Green Marine for continuing to show annual improvements to our environment and communities,” said Jess Herrera, President of the Oxnard Harbor Commission. “We see the work that goes into reaching our zero-emission goals every day and we look forward to continuing to pave the path of being good environmental stewards.”
Annual, rigorous improvements are required to achieve Green Marine certification — making this an accomplishment the Port of Hueneme is proud to attain. According to Green Marine, ports make up about 30 percent of its membership. Amongst the nine performance categories, Green Marine saw the biggest improvements made by over 50 member ports in their efforts to reduce greenhouse gasses and air pollutants, and the Port of Hueneme received its highest score ever in this category as well.
“Companies and public agencies need to recognize the importance of investing in community organizing training for their employees as well as raise environmental consciousness about their operations from within,” said Miguel Rodriguez, the Port of Hueneme’s Community Outreach Manager, during his presentation at the Greentech conference in Seattle. “This helps build legitimate community-focused relationships within [the maritime industry]; and serves as a bridge to a future where employees and community members work together to address social and climate challenges in adjacent neighborhoods. This approach helped us achieve our highest score ever and speaks to the significant investment from the Port of Hueneme to meaningfully engage the local community in our local air quality monitoring efforts.”
The Port of Hueneme has scored highly in many categories indicating excellence and leadership in their environment.
“It was also very eye opening to see how advanced our work is in comparison to many other Ports in the United States and Canada,” Rodriguez added.
“The highly structured, detailed performance requirements of the Green Marine certification process are a perfect fit for helping the Port to assess its year over year progress in the implementation of our sustainability programs,” said Giles Pettifor, Environmental Manager at the Port of Hueneme. “Achieving our highest scores ever this last year is a reflection the Port’s broader commitment to environment, community, and progress, but more specifically to just how seriously the Port is taking the global climate crisis and the urgency with which we are seeking to act now.”
The Port is pushing to reach its goal of zero emission operations, which was unanimously voted upon in 2021 by the Port’s Board of Harbor Commissioners.
Christina Birdsey, Chief of Operations at the Port explained: “We pride ourselves on being at the forefront of sustainable initiatives in our industry and this program ensures that we are documenting improvements year over year. The outside verification process makes sure we are meeting our goals and helps clarify new goals in the coming year.”
In the latest issue of Green Marine Magazine, Ray Johnston, the program’s chair, and president of the Chamber of Marine Commerce said: “Our partners serve an important role in providing the environmental excellence that our industry is demanding in terms of knowledge, products and services…they become keenly aware of our very specific objectives for continuously improving our environmental performance and can work more effectively and efficiently with us in achieving the higher environmental performance standards outlined in our program.”
The Port of Hueneme is one of the most productive and efficient commercial trade gateways for niche cargo on the West Coast. Five locally elected Port Commissioners govern the Port. The Port consistently ranks among the top ten U.S. ports for automobiles and fresh produce. Port operations support the community by bringing $2.2 billion in economic activity and creating 20,032 trade-related jobs. Trade through the Port of Hueneme generates more than $173.2 million in direct and related state and local taxes, which fund vital community services. In 2017, the Port of Hueneme became the first port in California to become Green Marine certified and was voted the Greenest Port in the U.S. at the Green Shipping Summit. www.portofh.org.
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