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The truck PORTal: reducing GHG emissions and improving mobility at the Port of Montreal

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  • Project initiator: Port of Montreal
  • Partners: Transport Canada which funded part of the costs through a greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction program in the port; the port terminals that accepted to communicate their data
  • Duration of project: 4 years; the project was launched in 2016
  • Cost of project: contribution of $1.375 billion from Transport Canada; direct costs ± Can$1.2 billion

Context of how the project emerged: 

A modal shift was observed for container transport at the Port of Montreal in favour of trucks in less than 5 years (2016: 55% truck, 45% rail). Furthermore, the inventory of GHG attributable to port activities revealed that trucks, although responsible for only ±35% of GHG emissions, are a more easily compressible source.

The Port of Montreal therefore set up a greenhouse gas management project (GHGM), aimed at reducing these emissions. Indeed, every day 2 500 trucks enter the Port of Montreal to load and unload goods. The Truck PORTal was implemented to combat pollution.


Strategy and objectives

The Truck PORTal is a free application in the service of road transport and the truck drivers who use the Port of Montreal. The PORTal provides real-time information on the traffic and waiting time at the port’s international container terminals: Cast, Racine, Maisonneuve and Viau.

The main goal is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions per container through itinerary optimisation methods.

The other goals sought are:

  • Reduce waiting time at the terminals
  • Avoid congestion at the entry of the port
  • Improve truck traffic in the port area
  • Obtain better performance without adding new infrastructures
  • Increase awareness among the port’s users

The project’s innovative characteristics


A data collection system permits measuring the travel time of trucks from the entrance to the exit of the port, and relays this information in real-time to the truck drivers and the dispatchers.





Results and perspectives

This project very quickly produced its first results:

  • Performance has been improved by +15% without investing in infrastructures.
  • The Port of Montreal has become a leader; in the following years, the port authorities of Halifax, Rupert and Vancouver launched similar projects.

A pilot project formulated with CargoM (the logistics and transport cluster of Montréal) is aimed at extending the opening times of the terminals.

In the longer term, other benefits are certain:

  • The trucking industry asks for ever greater visibility. The Port of Montreal is finalising version 3.0 of its application to include Artificial Intelligence with forecasting potential.
  • The experience gained with the Truck PORTal shows that the potential for modal convergence is possible. So the Port of Montreal is working on similar tools for maritime and rail transport.
  • The success achieved with this project gives APM definite leadership in the Montreal supply chain and leads to highlighting more ambitious initiatives such as appointment scheduling systems, Bluetooth beacons, etc.

How can this project be duplicated?

This application could be implemented in ports with heavy road traffic.

#Port #Montréal #Truck

For further information

Photo credit: Port de Montréal

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