This week’s Providence Business News has an article about the potential for short sea shipping in the port of Providence:

Advocates for short sea shipping – a regional alternative to long-haul trucking – want to see if Providence could be instrumental in restructuring regional shipping.

Short sea shipping works like this: When imported materials headed for Rhode Island arrive at a large port, such as in New York Harbor, they would be kept in their overseas containers and moved to a smaller barge that would bring them directly to the Ocean State rather than being driven here on Interstate 95, said Robert Kunkel, chairman of Washington, D.C.-based Short Sea Cooperative Program (SCOOP)

It’s an attempt to curb both pollution and traffic congestion caused by trucking, Kunkel said. Environmental benefits would come from lessened trucking congestion – shipping 150 containers via a barge would emit fewer pollutants and use less energy than driving the same 150 containers between New York and Providence, he said.

“Rhode Island comes into the mix because you do have that very nice highway infrastructure,” said Kunkel, who will be touring Allens Avenue on Friday, Feb. 29. “It takes you more or less directly from Providence out into the hinterlands.”

On February 29th, the Working Waterfront Alliance will be hosting a group of national short sea shipping experts who will be touring the are.

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