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PORT OF NEW YORK/NEW JERSEY: July 10, 2019. The Port Authority has released its development plan for land-use and infrastructure development projects until 2050.

The primary objectives are to provide opportunities for growth through stakeholder engagement; improve the port’s commercial value by investigating opportunities to maximize lease revenue; to continue to serve as an economic engine for the region; and to promote safe, resilient and environmentally sustainable operations in partnership with its tenants.

Release of the plan coincides with a new all-time port record. During the first five months of 2019, it handled 3,041,814 TEUs – surpassing the Port of Long Beach for the first time in two decades.

Port Authority of NY NJ electric buses“Our predecessors had the foresight to clearly understand the value of the port to regional jobs and economic activity and made substantial investments that today are paying huge dividends,” commented Port Authority chairman Kevin O’Toole. “This plan will continue the momentum we have built and drive this port to new heights that two decades ago would have seemed impossible to achieve.”

Noting the Port Authority has made significant progress towards achieving environmental sustainability and hardening its key infrastructure, the new plan acknowledges it is “facing an imminent rising sea level and an increasing number of extreme weather events caused by climate change” and recommends “protection strategies for its critical assets”.

The report publication coincides with a Nasa study that is forecasting the irreversible collapse of the Thwaites Glacier, part of the West Antarctic Ice sheet, that will trigger a 50cms (1.6ft) rise in global sea levels.

Should the whole ice sheet fall into the sea, possibly within the next 150 years as a result of an irreversible climate crisis, global sea levels would rise five metres (16ft). A scenario not included in the latest Port Authority plan.

The Center for Climate Integrity, a project of the Institute for Governance and Sustainable Development, has calculated the current cost of protecting New Jersey from rising sea levels by 2040 will be US$25 billion for 2,696 miles of seawalls. The state is No.6 on the Center's most costly mitigation list that is topped by Florida at US$76 billion followed by Louisiana and North Carolina with a bill of US$38.4 billion and US$34.8 billion respectively.

The Center says the cost should be borne by the principal polluter - Big Oil & Gas.

Pictured: The Port Authority is using electric buses at JFK, Newark and soon New York La Guardia airport as part of its commitment to the Paris Climate Agreement.

CSAFE Global




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