Southampton City Council wants the city’s port to be the first in the country to implement shore power for cruise liners, to tackle the pollution of ships running their engines while docked.
The BBC reported that Southampton's port does not monitor the air pollution it creates, despite the city being among the most polluted in the UK.
Cruise ships at Southampton docks from the Isle of Wight Ferry
Like other ports in Britain, Southampton has does not have the type of shore-based electricity supply used in other countries, meaning that some of the biggest cruise liners and container ships in the world leave their engines running while docked to power their electrics,
The council said it is firmly committed to improving air quality to protect the health of residents.
Cllr Christopher Hammond, cabinet member for transformation projects, said: ‘We would encourage the port to monitor its emissions and be open about this data. Only then will they be able to have a full picture of their contribution and be able to have a robust action plan to make sustained improvements.
‘Southampton City Council and its residents want to see shore power implemented in the port as we believe that we have a unique opportunity to be the first in the country to operate this. We will work with the port and cruise ship companies in supporting this provision.'
Southampton is one of five cities, plus London, required to implement a Clean Air Zone by 2020.
Port director Alastair Welch from Associated British Ports told the BBC he would like to see shore power in place as soon as possible.