Harbor dues are the fees charged to vessels entering the Port of Vancouver. As of April 1 the VPA will be issuing a new schedule of harbor dues that recognizes and acknowledges vessels that are working to reduce the air emissions they discharge into the Lower Fraser Valley air shed.

“Reducing port-related emissions, including those from marine vessels, forms a key component of meeting our commitment to sustainable port operations,” said Gordon Houston, President and Chief Executive Officer of the VPA. “We are working very hard to integrate environmental, social and economic sustainability initiatives into all operations, and the new Harbor Dues program is an excellent example of how we can strive to be leaders in environmental stewardship through a business initiative.”

The new rates are based on the air emission standard of the vessel. The differentiated rates Basic, Bronze, Silver and Gold are designed to provide a wide variety of technology and fuel options to vessels in order to promote and build awareness around a number of alternative emission reduction practices. The Gold air emission standard is at a level that will be attained by leading edge vessels, while the Bronze standard is designed to be achievable by many vessels that currently call in the Port of Vancouver.

“The world is moving toward reducing emissions, and the VPA takes its role in leading the sustainability of port operations seriously,” said Darrell Desjardin, Director of Environmental Programs for the VPA. Our new harbor dues program is designed to promote attainable emissions reduction goals for all vessels.”

Under the new Harbor Dues program, the VPA hopes to encourage superior environmental practices such as the recent announcement by Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, Ltd. (“K” Line) that all container vessels in its Pacific Northwest service, including those calling at Vancouver, will use low sulfur fuel in auxiliary achinery while the vessels are docked. In fact, “K” Line is going beyond the Harbor Dues program by making this commitment year round at both the Port of Vancouver and Port of Tacoma.

“The Chamber of Shipping is very supportive of initiatives such as the VPAs new Harbor Dues Program that incent carriers to pursue some of the many options for emission reduction,” said Rick Bryant, President of the Chamber of Shipping.

The Port of Vancouver is Canada’s largest and most diversified port, trading more than $53 billion in goods with more than 100 trading economies annually. Port activities generate 69,200 jobs in total with four billion in Gross Domestic Product and $8.9 billion in economic output.