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Sustainability

We take the sustainability of our operations very seriously – socially, economically, and environmentally. Being a sustainable port is key to our strategic direction and helps us keep our people, customers, community, and our shareholder at the forefront of what we do.

​​​​As a port located in the heart of the city, we must be smart and responsible about how we prepare for our growth, especially as Auckland's population continues to rise and the natural environment directly surrounding the port relies on us to look after it. We also have a responsibility to contribute to the wider global climate by reducing the emissions associated with our operations.

Our sustainability vision is to be a valued and trusted part of the Auckland community by championing sustainable business practices and forming resilient partnerships. Ports of Auckland has committed to a goal of zero emissions by 2040. In setting this vision and goal, Ports of Auckland has recognised the leadership role it can play in driving positive change in the ports and shipping industry both locally and globally. As a city port, our ambition is to exceed the regulatory requirements, with a focus on improving the environment for the community it is surrounded by.

We are proud to help customers optimise environmental efficiency through several steps of the supply chain. We've been working to increase the use of rail and our freight hubs to sustainably link New Zealand exporters to global markets and importers to their distribution centres.

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Contributing to a sustainable economy

The port serves as an important gateway for international trade connecting New Zealanders with global markets by delivering and receiving products from across the world. We employ over 600 staff and contractors in a variety of disciplines from stevedoring, engineering, truck drivers and office staff. We pay a dividend to our shareholder Auckland Council which goes to supporting Auckland city residents. 


Memberships


Sustainable Business Council

Sustainable Business Council (SBC) aims to mainstream sustainability within the New Zealand business community. The port has been a member since 2014. We play an active role in both speaking at and attending SBC events.

Climate Leader's Coalition

The Climate Leaders Coalition (CLC) was launched in July 2018 to promote business leadership and collective action on the issue of climate change. Ports of Auckland is one of 13 founding members of the CLC and we are a signatory to the 2019 pledge.

C40 Green Ports Forum

Launched in 2020 the Green Ports Forum connects port cities and ports around the world to take collective action to tackle the climate crisis and decarbonise global supply chains related to ports. We are part of the forum which currently includes 20 of the world's leading port cities from every region.

World Port Sustainability Programme

In 2017 the International Association of Ports and Harbours set up a World Ports Sustainability Program. Guided by the 17 UN SDGs the program aims to enhance and coordinate sustainability efforts of ports worldwide and foster international cooperation with partners in the supply chain. The World Ports Sustainability Program builds on the World Ports Climate Initiative that IAPH started in 2008 and extends it to other areas of sustainable development. 


Highlights

We are faced with many challenges in the work we do which we use as a learning opportunity to better understand the hurdles we must overcome to deliver exceptional sustainability outcomes for the port, our people, our customers, and our community. We know we still have a long way to go but it's worth celebrating the successes to date. 

2017:

  • We were the first NZ port to achieve Toitū Envirocare Certified Emissions Measurement and Reduction Scheme (CEMARS) certification, now known as the Toitū CarbonReduce programme. We continue to be certified annually.

2018:

  • We installed 3.2 kW solar panels on our rail office which generates around 4,000-5,000 kWh annually (in 2020 the solar panels produced 4,420 kWh of electricity).
  • Our Environmental Management System (EMS) received Diamond certification (comparable to ISO 14001) from Toitū Envirocare. We continue to hold this accreditation.  
  • Developed an online carbon calculator tool allowing customers to calculate their container freight emissions using different modes of transport: truck, rail or coastal shipping.
  • Completed a calculation of embodied emissions associated with the construction of the extension to our Fergusson North wharf.
  • Rolled out Method bins for separating waste, updated waste signage and ran an internal waste awareness programme.  
  • Installed scales displaying the weight of our waste in our communal café area to help staff visualise the quantities of waste we are disposing of.
  • Ran several driver awareness training sessions with a focus on fuel efficiency including reducing idling times in both land-based machinery and marine vessels.
  • Completed a Lean Six Sigma project which reduced Marine fuel use by optimising tug boat operating practices.​

2018/19:​

  • Completed an LED lighting rollout across the port including our floodlighting in the terminal.

2019:

  • Conlinxx truck fleet upgraded to low emission Euro 5 standard.
  • Commenced a 3-year programme of work to develop organisation maturity across climate-related matters. Aligning with the TCDF framework. Including a scenario-based risks and opportunities assessment.
  • Completed a shore power feasibility study for both our cruise terminal and container ships. 
  • Completed a waste pilot review looking at waste diversion from ships visiting our port.

2020:

  • Identified how the Ports of Auckland's sustainability strategy and operational roadmap aligned with the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Five SDG's were identified as being in our inner sphere of influence.

2021:

  • Completed our 2040 zero-waste to landfill roadmap setting out the steps to achieve our goal.
  • Our Science Based Target (emissions reduction target in line with the Paris Agreement to keep global warming at well below 2 degrees) was approved via the Science-Based Target initiative (SBTi). POAL is the second Port globally and the first Port in New Zealand to receive a verified SBT.
  • Successfully demonstrated a low carbon supply chain pilot with TWG and Toll by using renewable diesel across the land-based supply chain including straddles, reach stackers and trucks.  
  • Commissioned an on-port hydrogen gateway refueller, a small-scale refuelling system, that is now being successfully used to refuel Auckland Transport's new hydrogen fuel cell bus.
  • Completed a successful trial of renewable diesel, using a variety of blends in our empty stackers, reach stackers, straddles, pilot boats, tugs and vans.
  • Commenced a three-year programme of work using the Infrastructure Sustainability Council (ISC) rating tool to benchmark sustainability performance for infrastructure asset operations to enhance sustainability aspects such as energy & carbon, water use, waste, climate change adaptation and more. Note this project has been put on hold and will resume late 2022.

2021/2022:

  • Developing a sustainable procurement framework.  
  • Identified Māori Outcomes as a key piece of work for the port and commenced work on building a framework.

2022:

  • Delivery of the world's first full-sized and fully electric tug - Sparky.
  • Supporting Obayashi with the hydrogen production and refuelling facility as well as the on-port hydrogen Gateway refueler.
  • Marks the ninth year of no known Bryde's Whale deaths from ship strike in the Hauraki Gulf.

Ongoing: 

  • We have 15 electric and 2 hybrid vehicles in our current fleet of 55 vehicles.
  • Our cranes generate electricity each time they lower a container, this electricity then helps to lift containers meaning less electricity we need to source from the grid.
  • Adopt and implement a preferred shipping incentive scheme.
  • We have supported importers & exporters to take over 2,400 trucks (per week) of central Auckland roads by moving their container cargo to rail between Ports of Auckland, Southdown, South Auckland Freight Hub & Waikato Freight Hub​.