Thursday, April 14, 2011

Deal Reached on Shore Power for Cruise Terminal

New York finally catches up with Juneau, Alaska and will implement the provision of shore power for ships docked at the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal. Two years of negotiations and diligent attention to the issue by our elected officials and local activists have resulted in a deal in which the EDC and the New York Power Authority will subsidize a portion of the cost.

More detail about the agreement can be found in today's NY Times article.

Apparently the delays in reaching agreement centered around establishing a rate for the power and then figuring out who would pay for it. To put it into context, 28 cents per KWH is around 3 times the residential rate. The cruise ship operator will pay 12 cents and the balance will be picked up by the EDC and the NYPA. We find it hard to believe that so much time was wasted over figuring out who would pay for this. Using the numbers in the NY Times article, cruise ships are expected to visit the terminal about 40 times next year. If each ship has approximately 2,000 passengers (the capacity of the QM2 is 3,000) that works out to 80,000 passengers. If the cost of shore power is $1M over diesel, it represents an additional cost of $12.50 per passenger. Surely the cruise ship operators could pass this trivial amount along to their customers without compromising competitiveness.

The Columbia Waterfront neighborhood thanks Nydia Velazquez, Daniel Squadron, Brad Lander, their staffs and the other public officials who worked so hard to achieve what we hope is a successful first step toward establishing shore power throughout the ports of New York and New Jersey.

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