PPA prioritizes ‘Green Port’ initiatives

Published November 22, 2021, 4:00 PM

by Emmie V. Abadilla


The Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) is prioritizing more advanced “Green Port” initiatives after implementing climate change mitigation measures for the past five years.

PPA’s scheme was patterned after the Green Port Awards System (GPAS) of the APEC Port Services Network (APSN) and complemented the initiatives of its international partners, like shipping lines, to reduce the vessels’ greenhouse gases (GHG).

“We are now shifting our focus towards sustainable port operations to reduce our carbon footprint similar to the initiatives being undertaken by our foreign counterparts,” PPA General Manager Jay Daniel R. Santiago announced Nov. 22, 2021.

Filipinos should see “more environment-friendly PPA ports soon” he added.

Since 2016, the PPA adopted a 25-year Port Development Roadmap in coordination with cargo-handling operators, shipping service providers as well as trucking operators in line with the National Government’s Ambisyon 2040 program.

Early this year, PPA issued a memorandum on the mandatory planting of mangroves and trees for every contract and permit it issues as well as banning the use of single-use plastics in all its controlled ports nationwide.

Last September, the PPA entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Philippines to reduce plastic wastes initially involving three ports, Manila North Harbor, Batangas Port, and the Cagayan de Oro port.

This project is set to be launched within the first quarter of 2022.

As a testament to these initiatives, Cagayan de Oro port in Misamis Oriental received another GPAS recognition last Tuesday from the APSN. The Cagayan de Oro port, together with Batangas Port, are the leading PPA ports having received multiple GPAS citations from APSN.

“We want to duplicate the initiatives of our CDO and Batangas port with the remaining ports under our network,” Santiago noted.

“To do this, we activated a team to guarantee compliance with APEC’s GPAS scheme.”

The team will likewise formulate a ‘Green Port’ Roadmap for the Port Environment Policy. The Permanent International Association of Navigational Congresses (PIANC), where PPA is a member, as well as the Japan Overseas Port Cooperation Association, recommended that PPA adopt disaster-resilient ports and use sustainable sources of energy.

In 2007, then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo directed all government offices to use energy-efficient lighting to save energy and prevent pollution.

In 2011, the International Maritime Organization adopted mandatory energy-efficiency measures for new and existing vessels that came in force in 2013. By 2025, all new ships built will be 30 percent more energy-efficient than those built in 2014.