Marine transportation is a good news story

Marine transportation is the cleanest, safest and most efficient mode of surface transportation in the U.S., with far fewer impacts on the population than truck or rail.

Barge tows move more cargo than alternatives…

Using less fuel and with fewer emissions

“Do the Right Thing” is a key Kirby value

From an environmental and human impact perspective, safety is the foundation
Our philosophy is that we are managing for success in perpetuity
We invest in training and developing our workforce
We promote sound public policy for our industry segments

Going Above and Beyond

Marine Transportation


Kirby implemented usage of low-sulfur diesel on all vessels in 2012

All tank barges are double hulled to better prevent environmental spills

Voluntary usage of 6 psi vs. 3 psi barges (the industry standard) virtually eliminate cargo vapor emissions

Company policy does not allow for the discharge of bilge overboard, even if the vessel is equipped with an oil-water separator

Ongoing boat and engine replacement program improves efficiencies and reduces emissions

Barge cleaning facility goes well beyond regulatory standards

Reducing, reusing and recycling are integral to our practices

Kirby serves as a leader in numerous industry organizations that help define industry regulations and improve air and water quality

Large fleet and scale reduces unnecessary emissions and waste

Dedicated product tows reduce cleaning between cargos

Smaller fleeting boats reduce fuel consumption and emissions

Linehaul service improves barge to boat ratio

Distribution and Services


Largest manufacturer of frac units with Tier 4 engines, achieving higher EPA standards

Noise reduction fracturing units reduce up to 14 dBA at 100 feet

Bi-fuel powered fracturing units have a 70 to 80% diesel to natural gas conversion rate

Industry leading electric powered fracturing units reduce NOx emissions by 99%

LED lighting installed in key facilities reduced energy consumption by 35-40%

Paint and solvent re-use and recycling reduces waste by-products by 95% and recovers 99% of solvents for re-use

Mitigating our Impact on the Environment


At Kirby, no spill is too small – all cargo spills, even if only 1 drop, are recorded and reported


Cargo spills to water have declined 0.15 incidents per 1,000 cargo transfers – representing an 80% decrease since 2002

Kirby is committed to continuous improvement through cargo transfer audits, regular tankerman proficiency evaluations, advanced training courses, review and implementation of best practices, review of near-miss events, and quarterly tankerman meetings
In 2019, more than 4,900 cargo transfer audits were completed, representing 11% of all cargo transfers