The Green flag incentive program was set up in order to encourage ships to slow down with the aim to improve air quality. The Green Flag program has contributed a great deal to the reduction in air pollution and is thought to prevent more than 1,000 tons a year of air pollution. As stated on the Port of Long Beach web site, In 2009, more than 90 percent of vessels participated in the program, slowing their ships in the 20 nm zone, while more than 70 percent slowed down within the 40 nm zone. Because the ships emit less when they travel more slowly, the program has been highly successful in reducing smog-forming emissions and diesel particulates from ships.
Vessels that dock at the Port of Long Beach can also earn the coveted Green Flag environmental achievement award for extraordinary compliance with the program for a 12-month period.
In April 2010 Euronav received congratulations for its fleet’s excellent 2009 compliance with the Voluntary Vessel Speed Reduction Program. The port of Long Beach presented the Green Flag Environmental Achievement Award to Euronav NV. Operators that called the Port of Long Beach and remained 90% compliant with the Voluntary Vessel Speed Reduction Program in 2009 are entitled to a Port of Long Beach 2009 Green Environmental Achievement Flag. In addition to the Green Flag, our fleet will have a 15% reduction off dockage payable in the Port of Long Beach.
The Port thanked Euronav for its commitment to reducing air pollution in Southern California.