Thursday, April 7, 2022

Next Step in Clean Port Program Introduced as Freight Owners Asked to Stump Up

Only Cargo Interests Not Road Haulage Operators Allowed to Pay the New Charges
Shipping News Feature

US – Many in the haulage community will praise the way the ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles have gone about introducing the next stage of the San Pedro Bay Ports Clean Air Action Plan which sees charges introduced for loaded import and export containers as from 1 April.

The hauliers contentment however may be blunted in time when they realise that those with more environmentally friendly fleets will benefit. The ports’ plan is to charge cargo owners as opposed to the haulage company by way of a register in which all such bodies have to record their liability.

The actual collection, currently a fee of $10 per TEU or $20 for anything over the twenty feet, can be avoided if the carrying vehicle is a zero emissions truck, and under some circumstances, by low-nitrogen oxide trucks. The fee will be levied by a private company, PortCheck, and the cargo owners, or their appointed agents, must pay the fee in advance.

Whilst the average haulier will see this as avoiding yet another charge in fact it may well sway those liable to the charge to issue ultimatums to the their carriers to upgrade their equipment. In the short term each port estimates it can earn $45 million per annum from the tolls.

The introduction of this latest phase of the Clean Truck Fund rate, or CTF as it is known, was celebrated by the Mayors’ of Los Angeles and Long Beach Eric Garcetti and Robert Garcia and a range of city officials in a ceremony on 1 April.

The overall object is for the two ports to achieve zero-emissions drayage trucking by 2035 after the original Clean Truck Program, established in 2008, managed to cut air pollution from harbour trucks by 90%. Despite this exhaust gas emissions from trucks remains the biggest air polluter in the ports by way of greenhouse gases and the nitrogen oxides which encourage the formation of smog.

A short video of the ceremony to launch this stage of the program can be seen HERE.

Photo: The city leaders gather to initiate the program with zero-emissions trucks behind them. L to R: Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka, Port of Long Beach Executive Director Mario Cordero, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, Los Angeles Harbor Commission President Jaime L. Lee, Long Beach Harbor Commission President Steven Neal, Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 11 Business Development Representative Tommy Faavae, and Port of Long Beach Deputy Executive Director Dr. Noel Hacegaba.