Port of Oakland takes major step on clean energy project

Oakland, Calif. – August 22, 2022: The Port of Oakland announced today the approval of a $2 million contract for the design of a new, clean energy project at the Oakland Seaport. The project includes electrical infrastructure including solar generation, battery storage systems, a fuel cell, and the replacement of a substation and connecting circuitry.

“This is a major step toward our goal to make the Oakland Seaport a zero-emissions operation,” said Port of Oakland Maritime Director Bryan Brandes.

The Port approved hiring Burns & McDonnell, an engineering design consulting firm with expertise in power resiliency and clean energy. The design work will result in construction drawings of electrical infrastructure components that incorporate green technology and resiliency features. 

Design is the foundational work that creates the first critical step toward constructing  the new substation and the accompanying infrastructure. The latter will integrate renewable power to support the Port’s goal of transitioning to all electric, heavy-duty trucks and cargo-handling equipment. It will eliminate the reliance on fossil fuels in cargo handling operations. This new infrastructure in the maritime area will serve the former Oakland Army Base and Outer Harbor sites. The project will also improve the maritime area’s electrical grid resiliency.

In December 2021 the Port of Oakland received a federal Port Infrastructure Development Program grant award from the U.S. Department of Transportation. The grant is for upgrading a portion of the Port’s utility system and increasing its renewable energy capacity.

These design efforts will support implementation of that project. The Port said it’s grateful to the U.S. Maritime Administration (MARAD) for helping fund these upgrades that support the Port’s clean energy and power resiliency goals.

In 2019, the Port approved a bold initiative to create a zero-emissions seaport. The Seaport Air Quality 2020 and Beyond Plan provides the strategy and process for the transition from a fossil fuel-based seaport to a zero-emissions seaport. Providing electrical infrastructure systems to support zero-emissions equipment and operations is essential to decarbonizing the Oakland Seaport and delivering air quality and community health benefits. The Port is continuing to work with regional, state and federal partners to advance and implement clean energy and zero emissions initiatives throughout the Port.

About the Port of Oakland

The Port of Oakland oversees the Oakland Seaport, Oakland International Airport, and nearly 20 miles of waterfront including Jack London Square. The Port’s 5-year strategic plan – Growth with Care – pairs business expansion with community benefits, envisioning more jobs and economic stimulus as the Port grows. Together with its business partners, the Port supports more than 84,000 jobs. Connect with the Port of Oakland and Oakland International Airport through Facebook, or with the Port on Twitter, YouTube, and at www.portofoakland.com. 

Media Contacts

Robert Bernardo
Port of Oakland
Communications Director
(510) 627-1401
[email protected] 

Marilyn Sandifur
Port of Oakland
Communications Manager
(510) 627-1193
Click here to contact Marilyn Sandifur


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