Given that one container ship can emit nearly as much as 50 millions vehicles, even miniscule improvements made to boost the operating efficiency of these mammoth cargo-hauling vessels are worthy of praise.
Back in 2009, Toyota teamed with NYK Line for its transport ship, the Auriga Leader. Fitted with 328 solar panels that generate up to 40 kW of electricity to reduce demand on the vessel's diesel engines, the Auriga Leader – a ship that delivers thousands of Toyota, Lexus and Scion vehicles to the Port of Long Beach in California – is one impressive vessel.
Now, with the addition of massive NiMH batteries, it's sort of like Toyota has its own hybrid vessel that delivers the world's best-selling hybrid vehicle, the Toyota Prius. The batteries, along with the solar panels, have reduced the Auriga Leader's annual fuel consumption by more than 13 tons and cut its emissions by at least 40 tons. Regardless, massive vessels like this still gulp down somewhere around 120 gallons of diesel fuel per mile.
Hit the jump to catch video of the Auriga Leader and the Port of Long Beach's push to become a bit more green.
[Source: Hybrid Cars]