(CLEVELAND) — The Great Lakes Towing Company, the largest U.S.-flagged tugboat fleet operating on the Great Lakes, is the newest shipowner to join Green Marine, a voluntary environmental program for North America’s maritime industry. The towing company has also enrolled its shipyard facility as a Green Marine participant, making it the first U.S. shipyard to join the program.
''We continuously strive to improve the quality and safety of our products and services,” Joe Starck, Great Lakes Towing’s president, said upon the company joining Green Marine. “As leaders in the industry, we believe we have an obligation to do what we can to make certain our commercial activities are as sustainable as possible – both in our tug operations and at our shipyard facility.''
Based in Cleveland, the Great Lakes Towing Company is a significant operational link on the U.S. side of the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway marine transportation system. The towing company’s commitment to building 10 new tugboats at its Cleveland shipyard over the next five years is yet another example of its commitment to sustainability. The introduction of each new tug’s more efficient design, propulsion and automated equipment will significantly reduce air emissions and permit the company to retire two older tugs from service.
“By including its fleet of more than 35 tugs and its major shipyard in our program, Great Lakes Towing is reflecting its strong commitment to continually improving the sustainability of all of its operations,” said David Bolduc, Green Marine’s executive director. “Great Lakes Towing’s addition to Green Marine also helps us to achieve our goal of advancing environmental excellence throughout North America’s maritime industry.”
The Green Marine environmental certification program addresses key environmental issues through 12 performance indicators that include greenhouse gases, air emissions, spill prevention, waste management, environmental leadership, and community impacts – some applicable to shipping activities, others to landside operations. The certification process is rigorous and transparent with results independently verified every two years and each company’s individual performance made public annually.
For more information, visit www.green-marine.org.