CARB adopts new port regulations for cargo-handling equipment, ships

| Monday, December 12, 2005

The California Air Resources Board has adopted two new measures to reduce diesel emissions at the state’s ports. But for this at least this round, truckers seem to have dodged the regulatory bullet.

On Thursday, Dec. 8, CARB announced the new regulations, which are aimed specifically at port-based cargo-handling equipment, as well as diesel engines used to produce electric power on ocean-going vessels.

“We recognize the economic importance of the goods movement industry to our state, but we must ensure that trade is conducted in a manner that protects public health,” acting

CARB Chairman Barbara Riordan said in a statement. “Our efforts today will help to lessen the health risks associated with breathing the polluted air in communities near ports and rail yards, many of which are busy 24 hours a day moving cargo in and

out of our state.”

The two regulations are designed to reduce emissions of diesel particulate matter and nitrogen oxides. The first action controls emissions from mobile cargo-handling equipment, such as yard trucks and forklifts that operate at ports and intermodal rail yards. It is expected to reduce diesel particulate matter emissions by 690 tons and nitrous oxide emissions by 19,000 tons between 2007 and 2020, according to a press release.

The second action places regulations to reduce emissions of diesel particulate matter, nitrous oxides and sulfur oxides from auxiliary diesel engines and diesel-electric engines operated on ocean-going vessels located within California waters. Reductions will be accomplished through the use of cleaner-burning marine distillate fuels or equally effective emission controls.

The regulation is expected to yield immediate emission reductions upon implementation in 2007. Specifically, for the nearly 75 percent of vessels now using heavy fuel oil in their auxiliary engines, compliance with this measure will result in an estimated 75 percent reduction in diesel particulate matter, 80 percent reduction in sulfur oxides and 6 percent reduction in nitrous oxides. Between 2007 and 2020, it is expected to reduce diesel particulate matter emissions by more than 23,000 tons, nitrous oxides by 15,000 tons and sulfur oxides by 200,000 tons.

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