The Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach approve landmark “clean air plan”. Is this a blueprint for future port plans?
The governing boards of the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach unanimously approved the 2017 Clean Air Action Plan (CAAP), on November 2nd. The plan contains ambitious goals for lowering truck and cargo-handling equipment to near zero and ultimately zero emissions.
In a background paper, the two ports state: “the 2017 CAAP (Clean Air Action Plan) Update includes goals for 100% zero-emissions for trucks by 2035 and cargo-handling equipment by 2030 …The CAAP does not mandate or assume the use of one particular technology or fuel. Operators have choices about the use of the clean technology that meets their operational needs, while also meeting the ports goals for lower emissions. In addition, the CAAP introduces interim milestones for near-zero emissions trucks and equipment, but continues to support the ultimate goal of zero emissions.
The Ports seek emission reductions that will:
- Reduce cancer risk from port-related diesel particulate matter by 85% by 2020.
- By 2023 reduce port related NOx (nitrogen oxide) emissions by 59%; SOx (sulphur oxides) emissions by 93% and diesel particulate matter by 77%
- By 2030 reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions from port-related sources by 40% below 1990 levels and by 2050 reduce those emissions by 80% below 1990 levels.
During the November 2nd meeting, the CAAP was hailed by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia as a continuation of the leadership the two ports have played in lowering port-related emissions.
Gene Seroka, executive director of the Port of Los Angeles said “Today is a day to celebrate” a new level of low emission port operations.
Mario Cordero, executive director of the Port of Long Beach said “We will facilitate the technologies and the funding to make this plan succeed.”
Chris Cannon, director of environmental management at the Port of Los Angeles laid out an overview of the implementation steps while his counterpart Heather Tomley, director of environmental planning at the Port of Long Beach provided details on implementing the CAAP. These included steps to impose near zero and zero emissions on cargo-handling equipment and trucks. Mayors Garcetti and Garcia as well as executive directors Cordero and Seroka expressed the close cooperation that characterized the CAAP development by the two ports.
However, some groups urged a more cautious approach to the CAAP including the Pacific Merchants Shipping Association (PMSA) which represents terminals and shipowners. (See Long Beach Container Terminal article on page 10)
John McLaurin, PMSA president warned that the two ports need to “address the feasibility of zero-emission cargo-handling equipment and to examine the ports ability to compete with other North American trade gateways.”