Oakland to upgrade air quality plan
The Port of Oakland is to upgrade its Maritime Air Quality Improvement Plan that aims to lower emissions from containerised cargo operations over the next decade.
The Californian port said that it would convene a taskforce this winter - including transportation officials, civic leaders, community activists and environmental experts – who will be expected to create a document for Port Commissioners to vote on in the third quarter of next year.
The current air quality strategy, which has guided the port’s environmental policy since 2009, is due to expire in 2020.
Commenting on the environmental document, Richard Sinkoff, director of environmental programmes and planning at the port, said: “Over nearly a decade, we’ve made significant progress in curbing emissions, improving air quality and protecting the community’s health, but we can’t stop now – we’ve got to have a new plan in place well before the old one expires.”
Port officials told the facility’s Board of Port Commissioners that the updated strategy would deal with the aims of extending the port’s lengthy success in lowering diesel particulate matter emissions and formulating a greenhouse gas emissions reduction approach.
According to the port, diesel emissions have dropped 76% since its 2009 adoption of the original air quality plan, with truck emissions down 98% and vessel emissions off 76%.
The port said that the new document could further curb emissions by emphasising emerging technology, with examples potentially including zero and near-zero emission cargo-handling equipment, and that government grants could help with identifying useful software.
Port officials have said that they intend to align the port’s policies with the rules California is developing for freight transport, which are anticipated to greatly limit truck and ship emissions.
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