Our vessels navigate some of the most pristine and environmentally sensitive areas in the Pacific, including the Hawaiian Islands, the coast of California, Puget Sound, the coast of Alaska and islands in the South Pacific. In keeping with our core values, we are committed to protecting these areas by meeting or exceeding environmental regulations relating to air, water and solid waste.

Reducing Emissions

Matson was an early adopter of “cold ironing,” the use of shoreside electrical power in port rather than running vessel diesel engines to reduce fuel use and emissions, and invested in modifications to our vessels serving ports in California and China to equip them to provide cold ironing. A more recent multi-year, multi-million dollar program to modernize our fleet will reduce sulfur oxide emissions. By the end of 2020, nine of 13 active vessels are expected to have exhaust gas cleaning systems, or “scrubbers,” that virtually eliminate particulate matter and sulfur from engine exhaust. In addition, our four newest vessels are equipped with latest technology dual fuel engines, which can run at full power on low-sulfur fuel or liquefied natural gas. Our newest Kanaloa Class vessels have Tier III engines, which are designed to meet the strictest International Maritime Organization NOx emissions standards. All of our vessels meet or exceed the dramatically reduced fuel tolerances of the IMO 2020 regulations.

Matson works in collaboration with partners on its emissions reduction and sustainability initiatives. For instance, we are a member of BSR’s Clean Cargo Group, a business-to-business leadership initiative involving major brands, cargo carriers and freight forwarders dedicated to reducing emissions and the environmental impacts of global goods transportation to promote responsible shipping. Our subsidiary, Matson Logistics, is a member of the EPA’s SmartWay Transport Partnership, a voluntary collaboration between the EPA and the freight transportation industry designed to increase energy efficiency while significantly reducing greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution.

Other elements of our environmental strategy include the following:

  • Protecting water quality. Matson was a pioneer in installing ballast water treatment systems to prevent the spread of invasive species.
  • Reducing waste. Matson was the first container vessel operator to adopt a zero solid waste policy in 1993. Our “Greentainer” program uses a revenue slot on every voyage for the collection of all solid waste other than food waste for transfer to recycling, waste to energy or other environmentally regulated disposal facilities on shore; other than food waste, none of the solid waste aboard our vessels is thrown overboard. We are also reducing solid waste associated with our office and terminal operations.
  • Recycling vessels responsibly. Because of concerns about the negative impacts of ship recycling practices around the world, Matson expressly requires that its vessels sold for recycling be directed to environmentally responsible and safe recycling facilities.

For more information about our Environmental Stewardship Program, please see: