Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Newer Truck Fleets Clean Up Container Port Activities

Report Shows Dramatic Reductions in Pollution Can Be Achieved
Shipping News Feature

US – Way back in 2009 we wrote how the Californian ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles had achieved a reduction in pollution from trucks dropping and collecting freight containers of 80% and 70% respectively with their programme of banning older lorries, a tactic not without contention and indeed Court activity. Now their northerly neighbour, the Port of Oakland, has released a video demonstrating its own success in the same area.

In April 2009 the Port of Oakland decided it needed to follow the same route and aimed at an 85% reduction in diesel particulates by the year 2020. It introduced a programme of filtering truck exhaust whilst encouraging newer, less polluting truck fleets and also concentrated on reducing pollution from ships and quayside equipment.

Now a study from the University of California, Berkeley and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has illustrated exactly how well the targets are being met with the mean emission rate from diesel trucks operating at the Port declining 76% for black carbon, a major component of diesel particulate matter and a pollutant linked to global warming. Additionally the average emission rate for nitrogen oxides, which leads to the formation of ozone and additional particulate matter, has fallen 53%.

The results have pleased local environmental and educational groups who saw the occurrence of asthma and other respiratory diseases running at seven times the national average for young children with Dr. Burns, Director of the West Oakland Asthma Coalition, commenting:

“This is a big step forward, the Port said they’d reduce air pollution, and they’re doing it.”